Galeries Lafayette expects to return to a pre-crisis level in 2024
What: CEO Nicolas Houzé interviewed in French Le Journal du Dimanche
Why it is important: in 2020, GL was closed for 106 days and has lost half of its turnover (EUR 1,7 billion)
30% of GL stores, accounting for 70% of the business, are currently closed. And although the crisis has accelerated the shift to digital, “online sales, which account for 5% of our overall revenues, do not compensate for closures," the CEO explains.
According to Nicolas Houzé, "it has never been shown that our stores are dangerous places": "Since 30 May 2020, GL Haussmann has reported 200 cases of Covid-19 out of 4000 employees. Only 10% of the cases happened in the workplace.
Mr Houzé is confident that foreign customers, "who represent 60% of our turnover in Haussmann's flagship will return". Therefore, "this means not making staff reductions or drastic redesigning choices for our stores," he says.
Among the brands owned by the family group, La Redoute (historic e-tailer) has benefited from the situation and has seen its turnover increase by 20% to reach EUR 1 billion. Mauboussin jeweller sales only dropped by 4,5% thanks to thriving online sales. The online off-pricer BazarChic sales have increased by 15% thanks to price positioning. Royal Quartz, the premium watches retailer deep-rooted in airports, has seen its sales drop by 40%