Unions at French mail order firm La Redoute have refused to sign a redundancy agreement placing the company's future in doubt.

The company is being sold by Kering to its senior managers pending a deal being reached on a restructuring plan, which makes provision for 1,350 jobs cuts over four years. This is part of a strategy to return to growth by 2016.

Following the resumption of negotiations between management and staff, the severance package for each redundant worker was increased from EUR15,000 to EUR20,000. La Redoute warned that failure to accept the offer risked taking the company into liquidation.

The deadline for acceptance was 2pm local time today (21 March).

La Redoute's CEO and potential new owner, Nathalie Balla, indicated earlier today that, in the event of the unions refusing to sign the agreement, she would withdraw her takeover offer and inform a commercial court of the company's financial difficulties - the first step towards possible insolvency and liquidation.

A spokeperson for La Redoute was not immediately available to comment when contacted by just-style.