October 29, 2013 / 5:07 PM / in 4 years

Kering eyes job cuts at La Redoute in sale effort

PARIS, Oct 29 (Reuters) - French luxury group Kering said significant job cuts would be needed as part of a restructuring at its loss-making La Redoute mail order business, which it is trying to sell.

After a meeting with Kering finance chief Jean-Marc Duplaix at La Redoute’s headquarters in Roubaix, a union source said on Tuesday that around 700 jobs were at risk.

The unit’s customer relations department, which employs 180 people, could also be outsourced, the union source added. La Redoute has around 2,500 staff in France.

A Kering spokesman said it had received three offers for La Redoute and that all potential buyers acknowledged the need for a reorganisation, with an emphasis on logistics and IT.

“We indicated that the modernisation would have a significant impact on jobs, without giving any figures,” the spokesman said.

La Redoute has so far failed to attract a firm offer and there are no exclusive negotiations about a sale, according to the union source.

Sources close to the matter told Reuters last week that Kering was ready to inject at least 300 million euros ($414 million) into La Redoute to help find a buyer.

La Redoute is the last of Kering’s retail businesses, which it has been shedding to focus on luxury goods and sportswear. Kering’s exit from the retail industry began with the disposal of department store Printemps in 2006. ($1 = 0.7254 euros) (Reporting by Alexandre Boksenbaum-Granier and Pascale Denis; Editing by Marc Joanny/Mark Heinrich)

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