The Statement approved by Michel Auriou is as follows
Despite a full order book and strong interest in its product range,
internal problems with some factory workers precipitated a rapid
deterioration in cash flow that ultimately forced Michel Auriou to take the very difficult decision to place his company into the hands of the liquidators and as from the beginning of October the company has ceased trading.
French labour laws may be considered to be heavily skewed toward employees. This may now change in time with the new French government and it could be argued that some of Auriou's more militant employees could foresee an erosion of the traditional benefits they have enjoyed over a long period of time. Despite a 14% year on year increase in turnover up to April this year a few of Auriou's workforce took it upon themselves to refuse to work the overtime that Michel Auriou requested they should do to meet order deadlines.
This situation deteriorated after the traditional August factory closedown (4 weeks holiday) when the same employees made demands that Michel Auriou refused to meet which precipitated in calling in the liquidators and the subsequent closure. Perversely, through his actions Michel Auriou has protected his 16 strong workforce who, under current French employment law, will get paid for the next 23 months.
Michel Auriou wishes to thank everyone for the interest in his
products from woodworkers from all over the world. He is the keeper of the secrets in steel treatment and stitching of rasps that should not be allowed to die. At one time there were over 3000 rasp and file makers in his town, his company started in 1856 and was the last surviving company to make hand stitched rasps in St Juery, in South West France and one of only a few worldwide.
Whilst devastated at his company's demise it is Michel's fervent hope that sometime in the future he may be able to find a way to teach these secrets again and bring his hand stitched rasps back to market.