Paris (AFP)

The bankruptcy of the British tourism giant Thomas Cook continued Tuesday to produce a shock wave in Europe, the storm now carrying the French and Belgian subsidiaries, while an investigation was opened in the United Kingdom on the accounts of the company.

In France, "The Commercial Court of Nanterre opens today (Tuesday) a collective recovery proceedings for Thomas Cook France," said in a statement the company has 780 employees in France.

"The objective is to ensure the continuity of the activity of the French entity and to quickly advance on a recovery solution under the protection of the court," said Thomas Cook France.

The French subsidiary explains that "the deadline for the submission of resumption offers is set for October 22 in the evening" and that "the next hearing date at the Nanterre Commercial Court is scheduled for November 5".

The company, which has recalled owning 172 travel agencies and achieving an annual turnover of 425 million euros, said that "several serious potential buyers of the tourism sector have already expressed their strong interest" for she.

The oldest tour operator in the world, the British Thomas Cook declared bankruptcy on September 23, and the effects of this resounding bankruptcy have not finished to manifest themselves.

The Commercial Court of Ghent in Belgium announced earlier Tuesday the bankruptcy of Thomas Cook Retail Belgium, employing about 500 people, after the bankruptcy on September 24 of three other local entities for 75 employees.

It was forced to file the balance sheet because it could not find quickly the 5 million euros that would have paved the way for a reorganization judiciary protecting its creditors.

- Survey of accounts in London -

In London, the British audit regulator has announced the opening of a survey on the accounts of the tour operator.

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) explains in a brief statement that its investigation will focus on the audit conducted by the firm EY of the various financial publications of Thomas Cook during its 2017-2018 fiscal year.

It also gives the possibility to open other inquiries concerning the tour operator in connection with different regulatory authorities.

At the end of its research, the FRC can impose a financial penalty or bring the case to justice.

The bankruptcy of Thomas Cook is already the subject of two investigations, one by the public liquidator at the request of the Ministry of Enterprise and the other launched by the Parliamentary Committee on Economic Affairs.

This FRC announcement comes as the sudden bankruptcy of Thomas Cook nearly 10 days ago has raised many questions about its management, especially in recent years, when the group had multiplied the warnings on results and seen his action. 'collapse.

At the time of its bankruptcy, the group had seen its cash melting like snow in the sun which had pushed its banks to claim additional funding of 200 million pounds to ensure its long-term survival, and pave the way for a recovery by the Chinese Fosun .

Thomas Cook suffered from customers 'reluctance due to Brexit's uncertainties and changes in holidaymakers' consumption patterns, leaving traditional agencies behind for online bookings.

Bankruptcy cost some 9,000 jobs in the United Kingdom - the group had 22,000 employees worldwide - and launched the unprecedented repatriation of 150,000 tourists by the British authorities, out of a total of 600,000 vacationers supported by the company at the time of his bankruptcy.

The social and economic toll of the debacle could be further aggravated, including in countries where Thomas Cook sent tourists.

Some 500 hotels "will close immediately" in Spain due to the bankruptcy of the British tour operator, for example warned Monday the president of the Spanish confederation of hoteliers.

Conversely, the low-cost airline Ryanair said Wednesday that bankruptcy could do its business. "Yes, we will get Thomas Cook customers back next summer," Ryanair marketing director Kenny Jacobs told reporters in London.

© 2019 AFP