William Saurin, Garbit, Zapetti… How inflation put the Cofigeo group in difficulty

Margaux Fodere

The Cofigeo group, which markets the brands William Saurin, Garbit or Zapetti, is shutting down four of its eight factories. In question ? the rise in the price of energy and the cost of raw materials. According to information from Europe 1, Cofigeo is in a standoff with large retailers to obtain sales price increases in order to amortize its costs.

The rise in energy prices continues and is putting more and more companies in difficulty. Small craftsmen, glassmakers, bakers, butchers, but also large groups such as Cofigeo which markets the brands William Saurin, Garbit or Zapetti. Four of its eight factories are shut down, three-quarters of its employees in long-term partial activity. How did the company get here?

40 million euros of energy bill

Cofigeo is caught between two fires. Its first problem is energy, which should cost it ten times more. Next year, the bill should increase from four to 40 million euros. According to information from Europe 1, this soaring price should only entitle it to modest state aid, as the company is not considered to consume enough energy.

Rising raw material costs

The other problem is the rising cost of raw materials such as the price of durum wheat or tomatoes which are difficult to pass on to selling prices. These two effects are cumulative. Trade negotiations began in early December. According to information from Europe 1, Cofigeo is in a showdown with large retailers to obtain sales price increases. The factory closures of William Saurin’s parent company therefore respond to a dual strategy: to put pressure in trade negotiations and to ensure the economic survival of the group.