* Owners' restructuring plan approved
* Pret-a-porter, haute couture could be licensed out
* Talks ongoing with potential buyers
(Adds details on restructuring plan)
By Pascale Denis
PARIS, Dec 1 A turnaround plan for fashion house
Christian Lacroix that could see a licensee take on its haute
couture and pret-a-porter activities was approved by a Paris
court on Tuesday.
The ruling came after potential buyers -- Gulf investor
Hassan bin Ali al-Nuaimi and France's Bernard Krief Consulting
-- missed a deadline to provide financial guarantees sought for
a takeover of the company.
The fate of Christian Lacroix is not yet sealed, however, as
talks will continue with the prospective buyers even as Lacroix'
owners try to trim the business back.
Christian Lacroix, the company behind the designer known for
his baroque and embroidered dresses, was once part of French
luxury giant LVMH (LVMH.PA) and now belongs to the Falic family,
owners of U.S. retail group Duty Free Americas [DFI.UL].
The Falic group's turnaround plan consists of halting
Lacroix's haute couture and pret-a-porter activities, with the
aim of licensing them out to a third party in the event of a
Out of a staff of 120, only between 15 and 20 workers would
be retained to maintain the licensing contracts for accessories
The repayments to trade creditors are to be spread over ten
years, while the company debts have been postponed.
Lacroix was placed under creditor protection at the start of
June and has not made a profit since being founded 22 years ago.
In 2008, the company made a loss of 10 million euros ($15.06
million) on revenues of 30 million euros, while orders for its
2009 women's ready-to-wear summer collection were down 35
(Writing by Lionel Laurent and James Regan; editing by Judy
((firstname.lastname@example.org; +33 1 49 49 54 52))