Belgian fashion group FNG (owning brands like Brantano and Miss Etam) wants to reorganise its Belgian activities using the judicial reorganisation procedure. 47 stores will be closed, a quarter of all jobs in Belgium are at risk.
"Safeguarding as many jobs as possible"
The company, which recently published heavy losses and suffers from a high debt burden, has today filed an application for judicial reorganisation for its divisions Brantano NV, FNG International NV and Market Retail Belgium BV. The group wants to close a maximum of thirty stores of the Brantano, Boutik by Brantano and Concept Fashion formulas. In addition, all seventeen stores of Fred & Ginger and Ginger will be closed. The head office in Mechelen will also be restructured, but all jobs in the distribution centre in Erembodegem will be retained.
The reorganisation could lead to the dismissal of up to 287 employees, or approximately a quarter of FNG's workforce in Belgium. The restructuring is necessary in order to be able to continue the activities in a sustainable way with a stronger company, the retailer says in a press release. The closures should make it possible to increase the profitability of the Belgian activities and safeguard as many jobs as possible.
CEO Yves Pollé explains: "We understand very well that this announcement is hard on our employees. These measures are difficult and painful, but necessary in order to find new financial resources for the group and to meet current and future challenges. By focusing on the strengths of the company and striving for a more efficient organisation, we want to offer our employees a realistic future for the company and remain a key fashion player".