Things are not looking good for Christian Lacroix. The Ajman sheikh who was close to closing a deal to buy the beleaguered label for 100 million euros failed to submit financial guarantees to the Paris court charged with determining the fate of the house. The papers were due last Thursday, but neither Hassan Bin Ali al-Naimi nor the Borletti Group — the front-runners so far in the bidding — submitted the necessary paperwork. And they’re foreign, so Thanksgiving was no excuse.
Tomorrow, the court will rule on how to move forward. They could accept the restructuring plan submitted by the Falic group, which currently owns the label. Their dismal proposal includes keeping only eleven employees and paying off debts by way of licensing deals — so much for couture and ready-to-wear.
Because this is France and they care deeply about fashion and pretty things and the heritage of the Lacroix brand, administrators remain optimistic. The AFP reports:
[J]udicial administrator Regis Vaillot said: “It is not all over yet, anything could happen,” predicting that new players could emerge in the next few months, while acknowledging that for the time being there was “no plan B”.
He added that “serious” new bidders currently wary of tedious court procedures may emerge in the coming months. The court could turn down the Falic plan, though Vaillot said that would be “unlikely.”
To think, the sheikh sounded like such a sure thing! As randomly as he swept in on his steed with his buckets of money and promises, brandishing grand plans for Lacroix yachts, palaces, and candlesticks in addition to apparel, he may just disappear.
No firm buyer seen for Christian Lacroix fashion house [AFP]