November 2007 – Niort, France
Camif Particuliers was a €370m cooperative multichannel retailer of furniture and home decoration products with €17m of negative EBITDA and employing 750 FTEs.
After its acquisition, an aggressive turnaround plan was put into place to guarantee the sustainability of the activity through post a cost-cutting plan and an ambitious growth strategy:
- Restructuring of 50% of the workforce, redefining the processes, outsourcing IT, logistics and publishing functions
- Refocusing the business on high-end furniture and home decoration, launching a new website, catalog and store concept
- Redefining the price points and the marketing mix away from promotion towards value added advertising
After more than €25m of invested capital to lead the turnaround, the company returned to break-even in October 2008. However, despite all efforts, the company starved from cash because of lower Sales linked to the financial crisis (due to its negative working capital model) and the bankrupcty of one of its main suppliers Cauval. An offer to refinance the business was made but the minority co-shareholder, MAIF -the cooperative-, refused to follow.
The company filed for bankruptcy in 2008. The activities were purchased by the Matelsom group and relaunched 100% online. www.camif.fr is still thriving today.
Camif Particuliers is evidence that Keravalon invests above and beyond what its initial commitment calls for.