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Casino, the fall of an empire


A cataclysm for the Casino Group (Monoprix, Franprix, Cdiscount, etc.) and its 208,000 employees. The group announced on Friday, May 26, that the president of the Paris commercial court had decided the day before to open conciliation for its benefit and that of some of its subsidiaries. “The purpose of this procedure is to allow the Casino Group to engage in discussions with its creditors in a legally secure framework”said the distributor.

Me Aurélia Perdereau and M.e Marc Sénéchal are appointed conciliators. Reducing debt, which reached 6.4 billion euros, is an essential prerequisite for bailing out the group. At the same time, discussions are underway with buyers. Rallye, the parent company of Casino, has also been the subject of a conciliation since May 22.

At the same time, this same Friday, the Casino Group extended its already existing partnership in purchasing with the Intermarché group, headed by Thierry Cotillard. Les Mousquetaires have undertaken to provide 100 million euros of equity investment to the company in difficulty and to directly buy out stores of the group which represent at least 1.05 billion euros in turnover, i.e. a just over 15% of Casino business in hypermarkets and supermarkets.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers Fall of Casino: these shareholders, creditors and potential buyers who revolve around the group

The injury inflicted on December 17, 2015, the day of the publication of a vitriolic financial analysis against Casino, therefore proved fatal. While the action had quoted more than 97 euros in July 2014, the American speculator Muddy Waters estimated its “true” value at 6.91 euros. Madness, they thought in Paris. But some coincidences make you dizzy. Casino shares were suspended on Monday May 22, 2023 at 6.76 euros. The market capitalization of the tricolor flagship thus rose from 5.66 billion euros, just before the fire of Muddy Waters, to 733 million euros…

However, Jean-Charles Naouri, the father of the modernization of the financial markets in France, seemed to have achieved the hardest part: his conversion into an outstanding grocer. It is indeed by chance that the defrocked of “Rivoli” – as the Ministry of Finance was then called – invested in the distribution sector. Supported by David de Rothschild, the enarque and financial inspector created Euris in 1987 in order to achieve stock market success. In 1991, he took over Rallye, the Breton brand in great difficulty. He brings the distributor to Casino, in the bosom of the Guichard family, in exchange for a share in the capital.

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