Internal restructuring
Nord - Pas-De-Calais; Pas-de-Calais;
Location of affected unit(s)
Transportation / Storage
Land, Water And Air Transportation
Water Transport
50 - Water transport

650 jobs
Number of planned job losses
Job loss
Announcement Date
17 February 2009
Employment effect (start)
Foreseen end date


Seafrance, a cross channel ferry operator, has announced 650 job losses as part of a restructuring plan to cope with the economic downturn. All of the job losses will be in France. The job cuts are a result of a 23% drop in freight crossings in January 2009 compared to the same month one year earlier. The company lost 20 million euro in 2008, losing 3 million per month since October 2008. The job cuts will affect both sea-going and shore based staff, and make up 40% of the total workforce of 1580. 

While operating from Calais to Dover, the firm is headquartered in Paris, and is a subsidiary of SNCF, the French train company. The job cuts affect staff at Calais, where SeaFrance is the largest employer. The company will continue using only 3 of its 6 ferries. 2 ferries are currently for sale.

The trade union 'CGT-Officiers' have not accepted the plan and negotiations are anticipated. A Works Council has been scheduled for the end of the month. In October 2008 a less dramatic plan envisaging the loss of 300 jobs and ceasing the operation of two ships, was put forward, but was rejected by the board, who felt it did not effectively address the decline in demand.


  • 19 February 2009: Le Monde
  • 18 February 2009: Les Echos
  • 17 February 2009: La Tribune


Eurofound (2009), SeaFrance, Internal restructuring in France, factsheet number 68561, European Restructuring Monitor. Dublin, https://restructuringeventsprod.azurewebsites.net/restructuring-events/detail/68561.