Hertie GmbH

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Hertie GmbH

legal form GmbH
founding October 1, 2005
resolution 2009
Reason for dissolution insolvency
Seat Gladbeck , Germany
management Mark Rahman
Number of employees 3400 (January 2009)
sales 680 million EUR (2006)
Branch retail trade

Hertie branch in the department store of Görlitz
The former Hertie branch in Schleswig (until August 8, 2009)

The Hertie GmbH , based in Gladbeck (until 2009 was the seat in Essen - Kettwig ) was a German department store chain . The formerly 73 Hertie department stores employed around 3400 people, who in 2006 achieved sales of around 680 million euros. The last managing director was Mark Rahman.

On July 31, 2008, Hertie filed for bankruptcy after UK main owner Dawnay Day got into financial distress. On May 20, 2009, the final dissolution of all remaining 54 Hertie branches and the group headquarters in Essen-Kettwig was announced at the creditors' meeting. On August 15th, the last 20 branches were closed.


Hertie GmbH was originally created under the name Karstadt Kompakt GmbH & Co. KG through the spin-off of 73 department stores from Karstadt Warenhaus GmbH , a subsidiary of KarstadtQuelle AG . The decisive criterion for the spin-off was the size of the branch: all houses in the Kompakt Group had a sales area of ​​less than 8,000 square meters. The spin-off was justified by the fact that the Karstadt brand could only be presented on a larger area. A new concept should be worked out for the smaller department stores.

As part of the restructuring and debt reduction of the KarstadtQuelle Group, Karstadt Kompakt GmbH & Co KG was sold by the parent company on October 1, 2005 to a British investment group, the Dawnay Day Group. In addition to Dawney Day, who held a 50 percent stake (eventually increased to 85 percent), two managers of the British-American Hilco (UK) Ltd., a restructuring consultant who specializes in trading companies, held a 15 percent stake as private investors . The branch in Wismar was included in the original sales list, but was not sold because it is the parent company of Karstadt, where Rudolph Karstadt founded the company in 1881.

In February 2007, Hertie had concluded a goods financing package worth 55 million euros with the financial services provider GMAC . At that time, in addition to modernizing the department stores, the short-term goal was to set up a new IT and logistics system and, in the medium term, to expand the branch network through acquisitions.


Since March 1, 2007, the company's branches , which had previously operated under the Karstadt brand, had been named Hertie , while Karstadt Kompakt was renamed Hertie . This was possible because since 2006 the name Hertie has only been carried by the Karstadt Group's department store on Munich's Bahnhofplatz. It changed its name on September 27, 2007 in Karstadt at the train station .

Despite having the same name, the "new" Hertie GmbH was not a legal successor to the traditional Hertie department store group, as it had meanwhile been absorbed by Karstadt AG. Nevertheless, the choice of name was aimed at using Hertie's continued high level of awareness.

Purchasing and management concept

By mid-2007, 80 percent of the range should be switched to suppliers other than Arcandor. Deliveries from the Karstadt central warehouse in Unna were gradually discontinued in 2006. As a result, Karstadt's own brands Yorn , Henry Morell and Barisal , for example , gradually disappeared from the shelves of Hertie department stores.

With the revitalization of the Hertie department stores, a new management concept was also installed. Since 2007, Hertie has basically only provided the sales area and the sales and management staff in some areas. The placement and equipment of the advertising and sales areas was carried out there directly by individual contractors. The new contract suppliers included Intertoys (toys), Lekkerland (confectionery), Katag (fashion textiles), Papstar (stationery), KNV (books), Beauty Alliance (perfumery), F + D (shoes), Gries Deco Holding ( depot , Gift items and decorative accessories).

Hertie started using the EFT acCEPT payment system on November 12, 2007 , with which HappyDigits points were also credited.

On January 1, 2008, Hertie moved its headquarters from Gladbeck to Essen-Kettwig. As a result of the bankruptcy, the head office was moved back to Gladbeck in July 2009.


The branch in the City-Point shopping center in Kassel also closed on February 13, 2009 (covered by panels). Until 1999 the whole property was still a Karstadt department store.

On July 31, 2008, Hertie filed for bankruptcy with the Essen District Court after the British main owner Dawnay Day got into financial distress. From the group side it was said that they wanted to check the profitability of individual branches. Hertie insolvency administrator said that the closure of the entire chain of department stores would be inevitable if British financial investor Dawnay Day, the Hertie partner and owner of most department stores, does not agree to drastic rent cuts. At the moment, Hertie is paying up to 20 percent of the rent in many branches instead of the 5 percent customary in the market. However, after significant rent reductions, the remaining branches of the Essen-based department store group would have a good chance of survival.

The state of North Rhine-Westphalia wanted to support Hertie with a guarantee in the search for an investor, but the Ministry of Economic Affairs insisted that the owner of the property, Dawnay Day, lower the rent beforehand. On May 20, 2009 it was announced that no investor had been found and that Dawnay Day was not ready to lower rents either. By eliminating the tenant, he could rent the rental space individually at much higher prices (profit maximization principle) and wanted to renovate himself with it.

The former Karstadt / Hertie building in Hamburg-Langenhorn in November 2009

On April 3, 2009, the Dutch subsidiary of Dawnay Day, Mercatoria Acquisitions BV (MABV), which acts as the holding company for Hertie GmbH and the real estate , announced that 6 of 54 properties had been sold. These are the following houses: Hamburg-Bramfeld and Hamburg-Langenhorn (both to Kaufland ), Mettmann and Wesseling (to a real estate company from Bonn ) and Munich - Giesing and Munich- Laim (to Development Partner AG, Düsseldorf ).

On May 20, 2009, the meeting of creditors decided to close the 54 department stores still operated under the name Hertie, as well as the corporate headquarters in Essen, as a rescue appeared hopeless.


Hertie was represented throughout Germany with 73 branches (as of January 2009). The focus was on North Rhine-Westphalia (34 branches) and Northern Germany (20 branches). At this point in time, however, the branch network still had large gaps in the rest of Germany. Hertie was only represented with one branch ( Görlitz ) in the new federal states . Nine houses ( Berlin-Schöneberg , Berlin-Tegel , Berlin-Moabit , Dinslaken , Elmshorn , Hamburg-Barmbek , Lünen , Stade and Weiden in the Upper Palatinate ) belonged to the former Hertie Waren- und Kaufhaus GmbH, which was taken over by Karstadt in 1993 and thus contributed already the name Hertie .

Former branch in Gladbeck (previously Karstadt), July 2009

The branch network was to be expanded in line with the original strategy. It all started with a new department store in Straubing, Lower Bavaria, with a sales area of ​​3500 square meters, which surprisingly opened at the end of November 2008 despite the ongoing insolvency proceedings.

The Karstadt-Kompakt branch in Hamburg-Eppendorf , which was closed in May 2007, was converted into a “shopping center”, which should also include a Hertie branch. After filing for bankruptcy, this plan was abandoned.

On January 27, 2009, Hertie announced the closure of 19 of its 73 branches. One focus was in North Rhine-Westphalia, where the branches in Bocholt , Duisburg - Walsum , Erkrath , Eschweiler , Essen-Altenessen , Essen-Borbeck , Essen-Rüttenscheid, Essen-Steele, Herdecke , Herne , Cologne-Chorweiler , Lünen , Marl and Mettmann were closed. Locations in Lower Saxony ( Hameln and Delmenhorst ), Schleswig-Holstein ( Niebüll and Mölln ), Bavaria ( Aschaffenburg ), Hesse ( Kassel ) and Hamburg ( Langenhorn ) were also affected . Overall, this meant the loss of their jobs for around 650 employees. In April 2009 the branch network still comprised 54 locations. Half of them closed on August 8, 2009, and the remaining Hertie department stores closed on the following Friday and Saturday.

Thus, the name disappeared from the retail trade for the second time, after the Hertie Waren- und Kaufhaus in Karstadt opened in 1993 and the Karstadt-Kompakt branches were spun off in 2005 and then continued to operate as Hertie GmbH.

Web links

Commons : Hertie GmbH  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Süddeutsche Zeitung of July 31, 2008
  2. derwesten.de: - Hertie should be settled within two months (May 22, 2009)
  3. manager magazin: Department store - Hertie's rescue failed
  4. http://www.paycom.de/de/news/pressemitteilung-hertie.html  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link / www.paycom.de  
  5. Press release: "Hertie headquarters is moving" (PDF)
  6. DerWesten: "Forced move for Hertie headquarters"
  7. tagesschau.de: "Hertie files for bankruptcy" ( Memento from August 14, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
  8. ^ Rescue plan Westfalenpost dated February 4, 2009: Thoben: Guarantee for Hertie branches , accessed on February 21, 2009
  9. Podcast heute-journal from May 20, 2009, 9:45 p.m.  in the ZDFmediathek , accessed on January 27, 2014. (offline)
  10. ZDF podcast heute-journal from May 20, 2009, 9:45 p.m.
  11. ^ Hamburger Abendblatt: Hertie sells two Hamburg houses
  12. Department store deaths live
  13. Tagesschau: Insolvent department store chain Hertie has to close 19 branches (tagesschau.de archive)
  14. Westdeutsche Zeitung of March 1, 2009: Mettmann - Retail: Hertie - That's it, that's it from Andrea Wiegmann
  15. Focus: Insolvency - Hertie wants to close every fourth branch
  16. dpa / AP: The last Hertie branches are closing. In: FAZ.net . August 9, 2009, accessed October 13, 2018 .