The ready-to-wear Happychic group will cut 466 jobs and close some 90 Brice, Bizzbee, and Jules stores by 2020-2021. Details.
New job cuts in the textile industry of the Mulliez galaxy : after Pimkie, the ready-to-wear group Happychic will remove 466 jobs and close some 90 Brice, Bizzbee, and Jules stores by 2020-2021.
This is a “maximum of 466 positions”, according to the management of the group that announced the restructuring plan Tuesday morning in extraordinary works council headquarters in Roubaix (North).
The Brice warehouse at Le Mans should close by April 2019, about 90 stores will disappear and the first departures could occur in January or February 2019, according to the presentation to the unions and that AFP was able to consult.
In detail, there would be ten Bizzbee stores and 78 Jules and Brice stores throughout France, or about 330 employees.
Towards a merger of companies?
According to a statement from management, this is “first lines of thought about its business transformation project to return to competitiveness in the highly competitive market of men’s ready-to-wear.”
“This has been particularly marked for several years by the emergence of e-commerce leaders, the evolution of purchasing behavior and a drop in the consumer budget in clothing,” adds the management.
Happychic has 740 stores in 17 countries, sales of 720 million euros and 4,000 employees, including 2,600 employees in France.
As a first step, the group is considering “a merger of Jules, Brice, Happychic Services, Happychic production and Happychic store” by June 30, 2019, and then deploy “one and the same brand across the new network. “.
“We were prepared, but we still hope for a lower figure,” told AFP Patrick Digon, CFDT delegate. According to him, 300 posts should be eliminated in the network of stores, 43 in the logistics and the rest among the administrative staff headquarters in Roubaix (North).
“All posts are currently blocked, there are only ads for CDD contracts”
A “rebellious” union delegate
“I am revolted to see so many cuts,” reacted to AFP Nadia Ferrante, FO delegate, denouncing the “wrong strategic choices” of management for several years that led to this situation, she said.
“They failed to move the box as needed. The company has been struggling since 2011. It’s always the little ones who suffer the consequences of these mistakes.”
The unions had been dreading such an announcement for several weeks: the 43 employees at the Brice warehouse in Le Mans, whose lease had not been renewed, had gone on strike on the 25th June for fear of a closure.
In early July, about forty people had blocked the warehouse of Wattrelos near Roubaix Jules brand, preventing trucks to deliver and recover the goods intended to supply the stores of the sign, to protest against the threat of the social plan.
The group had already announced the closure of 13 Jules, Brice and Bizzbee stores by the end of 2018.
“We are collapsed,” said Ludovic Delhaye, delegate CGT.
Negotiations of the Employment Saving Plan (ESP) are scheduled to start at the end of August and end at the end of November.
Another voluntary redundancy plan for 208 positions was announced in early 2018 at Pimkie, a women’s ready-to-wear clothing store in the Mulliez galaxy.