French retailer Carrefour steps up digital push


PARIS (Reuters) – French supermarket group Carrefour on Tuesday pledged to spend 3 billion euros ($3.47 billion) between 2022 and 2026 to step up digital commerce expansion, a key pillar of the new strategy plan its boss Alexandre Bompard is working on.

Europe’s largest food retailer said this would represent a 50% increase from similar investments in recent years of some 600 million euros per year.

As a result, Carrefour is raising its total annual investment target to around 1.7 billion euros, at the higher end of a 1.5-1.7 billion euros range communicated in early 2021.

Acceleration of e-commerce, the ramp-up of data and retail media, digitalisation of financial services will be among the main drivers of its online push as Europe’s largest food retailer looks to retain an edge over Amazon on the groceries front and accelerate its turnaround.

Carrefour made the announcement in a statement released ahead of its Digital Day with investors.

Chairman and CEO Alexandre Bompard, at the helm since July 2017, was renewed in May for another three-year term.

He faces the challenge of conducting the second leg of Carrefour’s turnaround without the extra financial resources that would have been provided by two failed tie-ups this year — one with Canada’s Couche-Tard and one with France’s Auchan.

Bompard is widely expected to unveil his new strategic plan early next year.

($1 = 0.8655 euros)

(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten)

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