A family feud that goes wrong

News 11 January, 2018
  • Photo courtesy Isabelle Bergeron
    Jean-Michel Cabanes at the time of the opening of the new pâtisserie de Gascogne Jean-Talon Market of Montreal, in the summer of 2016.

    Philippe Orfali

    Thursday, 11 January, 2018 01:00

    Thursday, 11 January, 2018 01:00

    Look at this article

    Cornered at the foot of the wall, the founders of the Pastries of Biscay had no choice but to sue for $ 2 million against their own son learned The Newspaper. The agreement out of court which followed it would have led to the spectacular bankruptcy of the enterprise, throwing 200 people out on the sidewalk.

    This is the nightmare of every business man to found a company, make it prosper, and then to see it shattered after having transferred the reins to his heirs. Except that in the case of Pastries of Biscay and the family Huts, the situation is acrimonious to the point of transport to the courts.

    In mid-November, Francis Huts and his wife Lucia, who co-founded of Biscay in 1952, have filed a lawsuit of $ 1.9 million against their son Jean-Michel, who took over the management of the company a few years ago.

    Photo courtesy

    Francis Cabanes, the founder of the family business.

    The company failed to pay the rent for two buildings, still owned by Francis and Lucy Huts for many months, reveal court documents obtained by The Newspaper.

    But, above all, Jean-Michel, and Pastries of Biscay would have obtained a loan with a value of$ 1.7 Million in 2016, réhypothéquant the two buildings belonging to his parents. These allegations are contained in the proceedings instituted by Francis and Lucy Huts, and have not been proven in court.

    The parents and the son have come to an agreement out of court, on the 1st of December, the terms of which were not disclosed.

    200 employees in the street

    Barely a month later, the Pastries of Biscay closed permanently their doors, without having previously notified the approximately 200 employees and dozens of suppliers.

    The shock has been all the more hard for the employees and the management asked them to do a lot of extra hours during the Holiday season.

    Francis Huts appeared visibly shaken when contacted by The Newspaper yesterday. “I don’t want to talk about it. I’m pretty traumatized from the situation like this, ” he said.

    How the family Huts has it reached the point of having to turn to the courts ? “This is my son that you need to ask,” added the founder.

    Lawyer Francis, and Lucia Cabanes, David Banon has indicated that the family was currently ” extremely difficult times “. “At the present time, they have experienced the death of this company with a lot of difficulty.

    “Jean-Michel and his wife also have a lot of trouble digesting the end of which was a great success in quebec,” he said.

    According to Vincent Lecorne, president of the Centre of business transfer in Quebec, the trials and tribulations of the Pastries of Biscay give the impression of a transfer of a family business failed. Such a pursuit can only be a “last resort” for parents, ” he said. “This must be an agonizing choice for the founders of a business, for parents. It is for this reason that you need to surround yourself when you want to transfer the business to his children, and all plan and document in writing. “

    The Pastries of Biscay

    Photo Pierre-Paul Poulin

    Here we see one of the two buildings belonging to his parents, is one of 6095 Gouin West, Montreal, which is the subject of the lawsuit.

    • Founded by Francis and Lucy Huts in 1952, in the north of Montreal.
    • Was managed for a number of years by Jean-Michel Cabanes and his wife Anne-Marie.
    • There were 7 pastries and nearly 200 employees at the time of its closure abrupt, the 4 January last.

    The pursuit

    • The parents (Francis and Lucy) required 1,933 M$ of their son Jean-Michel for unpaid rent since last may and for mortgages acquired without their authorization on two buildings belonging to them.
    • An agreement out of court occurred on December 1, 2017, details of which are confidential.