PARIS Jan 9 French luxury goods group Kering's
mail order business La Redoute plans to cut its
workforce by about a third over the next four years as part of
its restructuring, it said on Thursday.
La Redoute is the last retail business Kering, formerly PPR,
needs to sell to complete its transformation into a group
focused on luxury and sports goods brands, a process which
started in 2006 with the disposal of the retailer Printemps.
La Redoute, which sells a wide range of products, from
furniture and bed sheets, has been fighting to stem a decline in
sales, hit by the proliferation of specialist and discount
internet retailers despite its own move online. On Thursday, it
said it aimed to see its sales grow again in 2016.
La Redoute told workers it planned first to make 672 staff
redundant, confirming unions' worries that some 700 jobs were at
risk. The business, which employs around 3,400 in total, said
1,178 jobs would go within the next four years.
It plans to consult with works councils on Jan. 15 and 16.
Last month Kering said it had entered into exclusive talks
with La Redoute's chief executive Nathalie Balla and Eric
Courteille, chief administrative officer of Redcats, La
Redoute's immediate parent.
La Redoute said Kering, which has already injected 400
million euros into La Redoute since 2008, would put in another
315 million euros ($428 million) to finance its losses,
restructuring and modernisation.
($1 = 0.7353 euros)
(Reporting by Astrid Wendlandt; Editing by Greg Mahlich)