Some companies do not hesitate to pay their invoices late, violating the rules set by the commercial code. After several weeks of threats, the Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) has this time decided to use “name and shame”. On its website, the DGGCRF displays the names of around forty companies and the amount of fines awarded.
The administration wants to be clear, “[payment] deadlines must not exceed sixty days from the date of my invoice, or 45 days at the end of the month”. Beyond this allotted time, payment delays “are seriously detrimental to the profitability of creditor companies because they require them to obtain short-term financing from their bank”. “These delays have a negative impact on their cash flow, on their competitiveness, and even, for the most vulnerable among them, on their existence,” points out the DGGCRF.
Among the bad performers is the multinational Veolia, which receives the heaviest fine, set at 1.6 million euros. The online sales site Showroomprivé comes in second place, with a fine of 1.3 million euros, which is added to another of 600,000 euros for misleading commercial practices between 2014 and 2016. On the third step of the podium, then comes Brico Dépôt and its 1.1 million euros fine. SFR Fiber SAS is one of the last to receive a fine of one million euros.
If the fines are less onerous for other companies, the simple fact of being mentioned on the DGCCRF website tarnishes their reputation. This is for example the case of Gifi Diffusion and its 660,000 euros fine, or Boiron laboratories and their 250,000 euros fine. Luxury goods and banks are not spared from the sanctions either, such as Printemps (240,000 euros) or Bred Banque Populaire (220,000 euros). The fast food chain McDonald's was fined 200,000 euros and the makeup giant L'Oréal was fined 90,000 euros. Enough, perhaps, to force them to pay their bills on time.