what future for the company in financial difficulty?

The Grenoble commercial court, which heard Monday the representatives of some 2,000 employees, very worried about the financial situation of Go Sport, as well as the management of the company, will make its decision on Wednesday. The purpose of this closed-door hearing was to verify that the company is not in a situation of cessation of payments in the short term.

An “urgent” situation

“The court considered that the situation was urgent, that it was necessary to act quickly”, explained the lawyer for the central social and economic committee (CSEC) of Go Sport, Me Evelyn Bledniak, after the hearing. Like the ready-to-wear chain Camaïeu, placed in liquidation at the end of September, with its 2,100 employees made redundant, its stocks sold off and the brand sold at auction, Go Sport is a subsidiary of the Hermione, People and Brands (HPB) group, owned by Bordeaux investor Michel Ohayon.

The auditors of Go Sport, as well as an independent expert appointed by the elected officials of the CSEC, presented a concluding report on Monday on the state of cessation of payments since the period October-November. HPB management retaliated at the hearing with another independent report, issuing a statement of non-cessation of payments and promising a return to positive cash in the very near future.

“But this report was made on the basis of incomplete information because it was stopped at the end of November and the question is: and today?” Asked Me Bledniak, while the representatives of HPB refused to any comments.

A conciliation procedure

If the suspension of payments is characterized, a receivership procedure will be opened. HPB had, for its part, requested a more confidential conciliation procedure which would have enabled it to choose its own conciliator. The group also expressed, during the hearing, its desire to sell Go Sport if a conciliation was opened, according to information obtained by AFP. Employees hope to save their business. “A transfer is always worrying, because there may be a social plan, store closures. We are here to preserve the 2,160 employees of Go Sport”, affirms Christophe Lavalle, Force Ouvrière delegate and member of the CSEC.

“If we’re here, it’s because we still believe in it, we have hope and we love our business,” said Laurence Labaurie, also from the CSEC (FO). Economic alert procedures had been launched in October by the auditors and by the CSEC, concerned about the fate of Camaïeu.


The CSEC elected officials also discovered that money transfers, for an estimated amount of 36.3 million euros, had been made on the cash flow of Go Sport to HPB, according to the expert report submitted Monday to the court of trade. “We wait and we trust justice”, affirmed several CSEC elected officials after the hearing, excluding embarking on a strike “which would penalize the company”. “The situation remains worrying for us, but we have been heard. We don’t want to end up like Camaïeu”, says Christophe Lavalle.

In loss for years, Go Sport, founded in 1978 and based in Sassenage in Isère, had been bought at the end of 2021 for a symbolic euro by HPB from the parent company of the Casino food distribution group, the company Rallye, itself even heavily in debt.

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