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Lacroix close to the brink

HAUTE couture firm Christian Lacroix yesterday filed for protection from its creditors after the credit crunch hit consumer demand for extravagant and expensive fashion.<br /><br />Lacroix, which is owned by Falic Group, a duty free retailer, and employs 125 people, said it hoped to continue to operate by getting court permission to go into administration and strike a deal with its creditors.<br /><br />Nicolas Topiol, chief executive of Christian Lacroix, said the downturn in the luxury goods had &ldquo;considerably hurt our revenues.&rdquo;<br /><br />The company, which has never made a profit since it was founded 22 years ago, was celebrated by characters in cult British comedy Absolutely Fabulous due to its flamboyant designs. In 2008 Christian Lacroix made a loss of &euro;10m (&pound;8.7m) on revenues of &euro;30m, while orders for its 2009 women&rsquo;s ready-to-wear summer collection are down 35 per cent.