Bankruptcy: Creusot-Loire Goes Under

The Paris commercial court last week ordered the liquidation of Creusot-Loire, France's largest privately owned engineering conglomerate. The group's companies, which had amassed losses of more than $220 million in the past two years, had run up debts of more than $633 million. The failure was the biggest industrial bankruptcy in French history.

Creusot-Loire was created in 1970 by the merger of three steel and engineering groups. In 1980 Harvard-educated Didier Pineau-Valencienne took over as chairman and sought to streamline the company's operations. To no avail. In 1983 the group racked up record losses of $200 million.

After two reorganization plans failed...

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