Rohde has laid off a further 133 employees at its German shoe factory, representing almost one-third of its remaining staff of 420 people. The move follows the dismissal last year of about 100 employees in Germany and a similar number in Austria, where the company closed its factory. The curator of the company’s insolvency, Carsten Koch, has indicated that he is in advanced negotiations for its takeover by a German investment fund, Square Four Investments. A judicial investigation is still in process into the false balance sheets presented since 2001 by Rohde’s previous chief executive, Friedrich Wilhelm Schmitt, to cover up its losses. Rohde still has a factory in Portugal and sells a total of about six million pairs annually. It has an annual turnover of about €100 million.