Christine Bakery shuts operations in city
Local shoppers may be surprised to learn that Christine Bakery, a once popular bakery chain, has been forced to close its doors due to poor performance and a lack of products to keep up with new trends.
According to a stock exchange filing last week from Hong Kong-listed Christine International Holdings Limited, the company has temporarily closed all retail bakery shops since December last year.
It has been relying on shareholder loans to keep operations running.
Yicai.com reported that the Putuo District headquarters office on Jinshajiang Road is locked.
The food review site Dianping showed that over two dozen stores in the city have "suspended operations."
The company has had cash flow and operational difficulties, as well as delays in payment of shop rent, suppliers, and staff remuneration totaling approximately 57 million yuan (US$8 million) as of the end of February.
Due to legal action taken by its suppliers, approximately 3.5 million to 4 million yuan of bank deposits have been frozen.
The company claimed that the pandemic restrictions dealt a severe blow to its business because of a decline in consumer spending, despite the fact that it proactive adjusted its production and sales strategies to deal with the negative effects.
The company added that it is attempting to diversify its business and plans to identify suitable methods of obtaining financing, such as asset disposal and equity financing, in order to resolve liquidity issues and resume operations in the first half of 2023.
The bakery chain, which did most of its business in Shanghai, was founded in 1993 and was once one of the largest bakery retail chains in the world. It was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
The bakery chain had 972 retail outlets at its peak, but it has had poor business performance since 2013 and has reported an annual net loss every year. Industry experts say that it has been slow to adapt to changes in the market, and its outdated store layout hasn't been able to draw in customers who are picky.