December 2, 2023

The ghost of Mappin: Americanas Crisis recalls aspects of the famous São Paulo chain’s bankruptcy – 01/14/2023 – Mercado

If it is active, then betweenthe first department store in São Paulo, is nearing completion of 110 years.

Opened in November 1913 in the center of São Paulo, the company grew stronger in the ensuing decades thanks to impressive sales and rare prestige – it was the place to see and be seen. However, the finale of the 1990s was disheartening, marked by fraud and mounting debt.

For those over 40, the crisis hitting Lojas Americanas today could somewhat signal a lights out at Mappin’, once a retail giant.

On Wednesday (11), CEO Sergio Real announced that he was leaving Americana’s leadership after just ten days in office and cited accounting problems in the company involving R$20 billion related to debts with suppliers.

In 1996, businesswoman Cosette Alves, who had controlled Mappin since 1982, agreed to the proposal. Ricardo Mansouran offshore company in the large retail business, with an estimated market capitalization of US$20-25 million.

At that point, the company was posting losses. “It was a very difficult period for the Brazilian economy. We had recession, inflation, high interest rates, and we made several stabilization plans. In the operational part,” he said. cosette a binding days after the sacrament a discount.

Mansour announced a new breath for the company, but what was seen was the opposite. Three years after the acquisition, the company was declared bankrupt. At that moment, Mappin and Mesbla (another series acquired by Mansour) must About 1.2 billion Brazilian reals (9.4 billion R$ in corrected amounts) to suppliers, banks, employees, investors, the Federal Revenue Service and state governments.

In between, the signs of fraud are evident“, I told binding At that time, the lawyer Alexandre Carmona, liquidator of the bankrupt estate.

In 2011, the Justice Organization sentenced Mansoor in two criminal cases to 11 and a half years in prison for fraudulent management of Mabin and Banco Crevisol. Almost a decade later, the businessman began to be placed under house arrest.

Three years ago, a sign of recovery. Marabraz has relaunched the Mappin’ brand, now in online commerce, and focused on bed, table and bath products, as well as décor.. It was a modest initiative compared to what the store represented in the last century for retail, but at least it kept the brand alive.

Today, however, the online address as it was launched ( is inactive. Report contacted Marabraz’s marketing department, but had not received a response as of the time this text was completed.


Mappin’s recent years do not do justice to what the store represents to the economic and social life of São Paulo.

Opened by Britons John Mappin and John Kitching at a time when the city’s population had not yet reached 400,000, Mappin quickly became a style icon, especially for the elite associated with coffee (farmers and merchants). The crash of 1929however, forced the store to adapt to a new scenario, diversifying the consumer audience.

However, it has maintained an aura of sophistication and identity with the expanding city. “When they were dating, back in the ’40s, my parents would walk into the Between as a meeting point,” says Jaime Troiano, director of TroianoBranding, a firm dedicated to brand strategies.

Speaking of the Mappin shop frequented by his parents, Troiano refers to the Art Deco building on Praça Ramos de Azevedo, in front of the Theatro Municipal, where the shop was moved in 1939. Before that, it occupied two other addresses: Rua 15 de November, where it opened and Praça do Patriarca.

For the people of Sao Paulo, Mabin is a first-world look. He was ours MessisChancellor says, citing a New York department store, which opened in 1858. He recalls particularly the “magnificent Christmas windows.”

“Mappin has become a very strong reference for consumers, who have gone to the center of São Paulo to see launches and sales,” says Eugenio Foganholo, partner at retail consultancy Mixxer.

According to him, Ricardo Mansour helped sink the company in the 1990s, but Mapin’s decline began two decades earlier.

To understand this process, the consultant says, it is necessary to take into account that retail formats have life cycles. “In Brazil, the format that lasted for a long time was the department store, where, under one roof, there was a very wide retail offer: furniture, shoes, clothing, food, appliances, among many others.”

In the 1970s, new retail practices began to gain traction that challenged department stores. There are three main formats that have flipped these retail chess pieces, according to Vaughanhulu: 1) niche chains, such as here (clothes) f c. Aronson (household appliance) ; 2) shopping malls, such as Iguatemi and Ibirapuera; 3) Like supermarkets Carrefour.

“These are shifts that are beginning to undermine supermarkets,” says the consultant. “From there, retail started moving from the center of São Paulo to the radial areas, taking in the flow from Mabin.”

Vaughanhulow presents this panorama to highlight the differences between the crises between Bankrupt and the crisis of Americana. Who is his future Uncertain. In the first case, there was a new retail context, which led to the deterioration of the shop – and Mansour just buried it. In the second case, the situation, he says, is nuanced: “Companies like Americana are growing, and they don’t have a tendency to disappear.”

The crisis goes, the crisis comes, and trade can close. Troiano believes that brands, when they are strong, are able to resist. “Mansoor’s actions affected Mabean as a company, but it didn’t change the idealistic image we hold of the store,” says the consultant, and concludes: “It’s nostalgic.”