January 18, 2022

The Marco Chaussures company, in Pont-de-l’Arche, will close its doors on December 31, 2021

Last year, Viviane Tassel and her mom (below) still believed they could save their business. (© La Dépêche de Louviers – archives)

the shoe maker Marco, at Pont-de-l’Arche (Eure), near Louviers, has existed for 270 years (created in 1750). The company will definitively close its doors December 31, 2021, after several years of financial difficulties. The Covid-19 pandemic did not help.

The 25 employees find themselves unemployed and the government promises support.

The director of the company, Viviane Tassel, grant us this interview.

News: When did the business start to have economic difficulties?

Vivane Tassel : I should have closed the business in 2020. Orders had already fallen sharply. Yet we still believed in it. The great difficulty encountered in recent years concerned the reduction in the number of points of sale and the number of pairs sold. Already in 2010 we had experienced great financial difficulty. At the time, we managed to save the company and for 10 years we paid at least the salaries and social charges of the employees. Globalization got the better of us.

The Covid-19 crisis did not help you …

V. T. : This year, alas, we did not have the hoped-for orders. For six months, the business was closed. How do you want customers to come back? We thus lost € 630,000 in turnover over one year. The company’s cash flow has shrunk. We therefore decided to dissolve the company at the general meeting of December 3, 2021 in order to avoid a judicial liquidator. In the process, the decision to dissolve was sent to the commercial register.

What aid were you able to benefit from during the crisis?

V. T. : The state only helped us to cover partial unemployment. This is very good, but this aid has diminished over time to end up covering only 20% of salaries and staff costs. It was insufficient to pay the employees, especially since the cash flow had fallen sharply.

Last July, the sub-prefect of Les Andelys visited the company Marco
Last July, the sub-prefect of Les Andelys visited the company Marco (© La Dépêche de Louviers – BCP)

The sub-prefect of Andelys reacts: “The management has not taken any steps”

Last July, the sub-prefect of Andelys, Virginie Sené-Rouquier, visited the Marco company which, for the health crisis, was receiving state aid. The meeting between the sub-prefect and the director of the company Marco, Viviane Tassel, had been stormy. The latter had held the State responsible for the dramatic situation of the company although various aids had been granted to it. Virginie Sené-Rouquier remembers: “During my visit, several steps were mentioned, in particular contacting the regional directorate for the economy, employment, work and solidarity (Dreet), and requesting an advisor for his management difficulties, support employees and get closer to Pôle emploi. She did not take any steps and decided that in view of the situation of her company, it was not necessary ”. Virginie Sené-Rouquier also points to the lack of modernization of the Marco company: “To increase your orders, you have to know how to modernize your products and change your sales strategy”.
As a result, the Marco company closes its doors and 25 employees find themselves without a job.
For Virginie Sené-Rouquier, the priority is now to support employees for a rapid return to work: “The job market is very good at the moment, companies are hiring, there are offers in the Eure. We would like the Hermès company to welcome Marco employees who have expertise in quality products. They will also be offered training ”.
The sub-prefect calls out to all small and medium-sized enterprises (VSEs, SMEs): “As soon as a company shows signs of weakness, it is necessary to contact 08 06 000 245. The situation will then be analyzed and aid will be provided. proposed to get out of the crisis ”.

What procedure have you initiated with regard to staff?

V. T. : You can’t stop a business like that. As early as October, I alerted the staff to the economic state of the company and that there was a risk of a cessation of activity. As of the decision of the general meeting, I legally informed the staff and met one by one with the employees on December 6. From this date, they have 21 days to choose to leave under the CSP (Professional Security Contract) of the State or to directly receive the dismissal bonus with two months notice. With the CSP, employees are supported by Pôle emploi for one year. They receive their full salary and can follow training courses to move into a new profession.

How did this announcement go?

V. T. : Everyone has a big heart for it. Four employees retire within six months. Nine other employees have 35 years of seniority and seven others are younger. The end of their period of activity is December 22 but having no more work I released them on December 6 because some come from far away, paying them of course for this period. I would like to thank the mayor of Pont-de-l’Arche, Richard Jacquet, who welcomed us all together, myself and the employees.

The mayor met the employees

“The Marco company was faced with a significant drop in orders. From several thousand shoes, it has grown to a few hundred since the health crisis, ”recalls Richard Jaquet (PS), the mayor of Pont-de-l’Arche, specifying that already in 2010, the company had to face up to judicial liquidation.
Last week, Richard Jacquet received the company’s employees in order to provide them with the best possible support: “Via our France services area, Marco employees will be taken care of. They will be offered digital support, help in writing their CV and cover letter, and for those eligible for retirement, support them in their efforts ”. The mayor assures us that individual support will be offered to the 25 employees of the Marco company: “Those who have to look for a job must not lose contact”.
Regarding the building of the Marco company, Richard Jacquet believes “it is still too early to know the future of the premises” but “belonging to the industrial heritage of the town, I will be very careful so that it does not appear. not anything going on there ”.

What happens before the definitive closure of the business?

V. T. : To allow us to pay salaries, social charges, the seniority taken over during the liquidation of 2010 (43 years for some) and the running costs of the company to come, we sell off the shoes not sold in batches to very attractive prices and the machines are sold to professionals. We also do a sale to individuals every day of the week except Friday. We have thus already recovered 100,000 € in cash to pay for part of the cessation of activity, but some are still lacking.

How do you feel?

V. T. : The days are intense from Monday morning to Sunday evening. My nights boil down to two hours of sleep. All the same, I would like to remind you that I find myself without having a CSP because I am a corporate officer. It is a painful time in my life.

With our correspondent, Jean-Claude Courteille

Days and times for the sale of shoes until December 22, 2021: Monday to Thursday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Address: 17, rue Maurice Delamare in Pont-de-l’Arche. Phone. : 02 32 98 70 20

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