Tati, the much-loved cut-price clothing chain that has been a French retail institution for more than 70 years, is to close its original – and last – Paris store, after public transport strikes and the coronavirus crisis sent sales plunging by more than 60%.Founded by a Tunisian immigrant at the end of the second world war in the mainly west African Barbès district at the foot of Montmartre, Tati grew into more than 100 outlets around France, and its pink-and-white chequered carrier bags became a style statement for film stars and celebrities.
The company has been in difficulty for decades, having struggled to adapt its “pile ‘em high, sell ‘em cheap” strategy of the early postwar years to a more fashion-conscious clientele seduced by big fast-moving multinationals such as H&M or Primark. [ . . . ]