Casa International gets new owners. The Blokker family is selling the chain to the current management and to Globitas, an investment company specialised in the relaunch of companies in difficulty. Financial details will not be disclosed.
Loss-making for some time
At the beginning of last year, the Blokker family saved Casa from collapse by converting 69.5 million euros in debts into capital. But since then there has been no improvement. In January, Casa sold its brand-new distribution centre in Olen in a sale-and-lease-back operation to CBRE Global Investors. That transaction brought in about 57 million euros.
Casa has been making losses for quite some time, and the corona crisis has only made matters worse. Just like the other chains in the now collapsed Blokker empire, the retailer lagged hopelessly behind in the online segment, while the physical stores had to contend with stiff competition from Action and IKEA, among others.
"We would like to express our thanks to the management and employees for their unstinting efforts in recent years, and in particular for the challenges of the past Covid year. After more than 30 years, it is time for a new wind and we wish them every success with the new shareholder", the Blokker family, former shareholders of CASA, announced in a press release.
Acceleration of growth
It is now up to the current CEO, with the support of Globitas, to try to find a new momentum. "We see a lot of opportunities to help CASA make the transition to a strong pan-European omnichannel player in the home & living retail segment", comments Arthur Clement, partner at Globitas.
Despite the difficult circumstances, CASA is still a growing chain with 500 stores in 8 countries. It is not immediately clear whether the takeover will also result in a major change of direction. In the press release, CEO Giane Van Landuyt speaks of "accelerating the current growth through our omnichannel strategy in shops, e-commerce and B2B activities".