12 French Bookstores Close Shop
Twelve new “Chapitre” bookstores are set to close shop in France. The management team, a subsidiary of Actissia, plans to eliminate 219 positions. A report by Gregoire Poussielgue from LesEchos.fr.
In yet another example of the difficulties facing French bookshops, Chapitre, a subsidiary of Actissia, has announced plans to close 12 of its 57 bookstores, which should lead to the elimination of 219 jobs. Nine store closings are final, unless they find a buyer quickly, while three additional stores are expected to be assigned to another group. For these three stores, the group says that it has received third-party interest for the lease and continued activity of the bookstores. “At a time when our future is at stake, it is unfortunate that we must consider closing some of our stores,” management stated in a message to employees.
“The situation is critical and Chapter bookstores will require a quick turnaround to avoid jeopardizing the entire network of stores. Thus, should we be unable to find a buyer in the short term, the ongoing burden facing those nine libraries would compel us to consider their closure and bring about a serious risk of mortgaging the future of the network”, the direction indicated in the same message.
The group employs a total of 1,200 employees. The nine libraries affected by the closure are located in Boulogne, Calais, Cannes, Dax, Evreux, Grenoble, Lyon, Nancy, Saint Sebastian and Narbonne. The other three libraries are located in Belfort, Colmar and Toulouse. On Friday, April 12, management will present a recovery plan detailing overall savings measures to the board of directors. At the Paris Book Fair held in March, Aurélie Filippetti, Minister of Culture and Communication, announced the first steps of a plan to support libraries. This plan includes the creation of a special working capital fund to support struggling bookstores.