The North Court of Appeal confirms that the choice of the buyer of the company specializing in office supplies was not marred by “excess of power” on the part of the Lille commercial court.
There will therefore be a thousand jobs lost in the takeover of Office Dépôt by the Alkor cooperative. The North Court of Appeal ruled on Friday July 9 “inadmissible” the appeal filed by the central CSE of Office Dépôt and two staff representatives. Only 500 jobs will be maintained out of 1,500.
The central social and economic committee had challenged Thursday, during a hearing in Douai, this resumption decided on June 3, attacking the decision of the commercial court of Lille in nullity for “excess of power”, one of the rare ways of possible remedies for employee representative organizations in this type of procedure. Among several arguments, the CSE considered that the court had “Wrongly distorted the facts” submitted for discussion by adding the posts taken over by Alkor groupe to the proposed external reclassifications.
In its offer, the cooperative made up of seven companies undertook to take over 50 stores and 460 employees – out of 1,483 of Office Dépôt – within the “retail” branch, and to offer 370 additional positions via a job exchange. with priority hiring over two years. The court then rejected the offer of Adexgroup and Adveo, which provided for the takeover of 58 stores and 628 employees and a job market of 130 positions. He had judged both offers “Substantially equivalent in terms of maintaining employment”.
No “excess of power”
“When we write that 460 is equal to 628, it is not mathematically understandable”, launched Me Céline Pares, one of the lawyers of the CSE, considering that the court had “violated” certain provisions of the Commercial Code. But for the Court of Appeal, “The judge’s ignorance of the limits of the dispute […] or even a lack of knowledge of the law, even of public order, are not likely to characterize an excess of power ”.
“At no time do the appellants demonstrate that the judge would have intervened outside the scope of his power to judge”, write the judges in this judgment rendered on Friday, and consulted by AFP, rejecting the various arguments defended by the CSE. The Court thus finds the appeal of the central CSE inadmissible, “Without it being necessary to examine or the other pleas invoked […] nor the substance of the dispute ”.
During the hearing, the public prosecutor recalled that the redundancies, already initiated, could not in any case be canceled. A total of 505 people have so far been taken over by Alkor, including 45 through the reclassification unit.
Source: Libération by www.liberation.fr.
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