Shoe shop chain is latest coronavirus bankruptcy

Liquidation company Luxtex has taken on the destocking of the Chaussures Vedette and Geox stores in the Belle Étoile. Maison Moderne

Liquidation company Luxtex has taken on the destocking of the Chaussures Vedette and Geox stores in the Belle Étoile. Maison Moderne

Luxembourg-owned shoe store chain Chaussures Vedette has filed for bankruptcy and closed a string of outlets, including its own brand store and Geox shop in the Belle Étoile mall, Main Square at the Cloche d'Or shopping centre, Chaussures Patricia on Rue des Capucins, as well as the Underground Shoes & Fashion stores in the Belle Étoile and Belval Plaza in Esch. In total, the jobs of 35 employees are on the line, according to José Gonçalves of the OGBL.
The Luxembourg brand opened its flagship store in the shopping centre in Bertrange in 1974 and then also opened in the Cactus gallery in Ingeldorf.

The bankruptcy leaves a series of commercial spaces vacant, though some have already found new tenants. The 640m² Chaussures Vedette space located on the ground floor of the Belle Étoile, will soon be occupied by Chaussures Léon. “The lease agreement was signed last week” according to Belle Étoile director Manu Konsbruck. Chaussures Léon, a family run business owned by cabinet minister Corinne Cahen (though she is not involved in its business operation), will close its City Shoes outlet on the corner of boulevard Royal and avenue de la Porte Neuve.

Plenty of work for liquidation specialist

For now, the Chaussures Vedette and Geox stores in the Belle Étoile have been plastered with a banner by Luxtex announcing a liquidation of their stock. Luxtex based on the route d’Arlon specialises in buying out bankruptcies and destocking. On Saturday morning, crowds flocked to the Belle Étoile two shops to grab shoes at discounts of up to 40%.

Luxtex is certainly not shy of work brought about by the impact of coronavirus. “We have hired at least six staff, and I think it will continue in the coming months and years,” said one of its managers, Sandro Gioioso.
Luxembourg fashion retail federation Femo has an equally gloomy outlook.  “I do not see any company that is not shaking with fear today,” says its president Marc Muller--though he did confirm healthy crowds during the first weekend of the summer sales. “We had a lot of Belgian and German customers as well. It’s a good thing we didn’t delay the start of the sales.” Sales in France only begin on 15 July and in Belgium they are even later, on 1 August, giving Luxembourg retailers a little head start.

This article was originally published in French by Paperjam. It has been translated and edited by Delano.