The loss-making French courier company Mory Ducros has declared bankruptcy. 5,000 jobs are now at risk, in the largest bankruptcy case seen in France since 2001.
The firm was brought into existence a year ago in a merger between Mory and Ducros. The group haemorrhaged €79.5 (£66.4m) in the 16 months to December, according to court documents cited by Le Monde.
The bankruptcy will come as a further unwelcome blow to the French economy. Paris recently suffered tractor blockades as farmers protested against punitive new taxes, while the latest purchasing managers' index (PMI) reveal a contraction in private sector activity for the first time in three months.
Meanwhile, embattled socialist President Francois Hollande is struggling to convince French voters that his government is taking the correct course of action, with his approval rating down to a miserable 20 per cent.