Le Pain Quotidien on brink of collapse

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Le Pain Quotidien on brink of collapse

Related tags: bakery, Administration, Coronavirus

Bakery chain Le Pain Quotidien is reportedly on the brink of collapse, putting 500 jobs at risk.

According to Sky News​, the Belgian-owned company is currently racing to find a buyer for its UK operation, and could appoint administrators as soon as this week. 

An emergency sale process for the business, which trades from 26 sites in Britain, has set a deadline of Wednesday for offers.

Alvarez & Marsal, the professional services firm, is overseeing the auction and is likely to be appointed as administrator unless a solvent sale is concluded in the coming days.

One potential bidder said a pre-pack administration was the likeliest outcome.

Should the business collapse, it will be the latest casualty of the Coronavirus crisis.

Last month, Carluccio’s entered administration​with its directors saying a sustained period of challenging trading, which had been exacerbated by the coronavirus outbreak, meant the chain was "unable to meet its financial obligations as they were due”.

The majority of its 2,000 staff have been furloughed and will be paid under the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme while administrators from FRP assess the group’s options.

Meanwhile, earlier this month Mark Hix’s restaurant businesses also called in administrators, with the chef restaurateur’s parent organisation WSH & Mark Hix Restaurants; Restaurants etc; and Hix Townhouse all filing. 

In a statement, Hix said that the decision to appoint administrators was done without his support​, and has resulted in his staff being made redundant without being able to be put on furlough.

Related topics: Business

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