"Carrefour is selling an 80% stake in its China business, including more than 200 stores, to Nanjing-based retailer Suning.com Co. for about $700 million. The French company, once a dominant force in many Chinese cities, saw its sales in the market fall 5.9% to €4.1 billion ($4.67 billion) last year."
On grassroots level I observe that there are so many smaller middle/upscale grocery stores popping up (in Kunming alone), that market share of this kind of big sipermarkets is bound to go down.
I have no idea how Suning is planning to make profit out of this.
If this was some other country, maybe the real estate and often prime land location alone would be worth something, but not so sure in China.
Maybe if Carrefour stores weren't all claustrophobic, airless, windowless firetraps they might have succeeded.
Not just saturation of smaller grocery store presence, but the rise of JD and TMall online supermarkets. They offer promotions on top of already cheaper produce and items delivered to your door.
A few months ago I read Carrefour was selling minority China stake to JD, which already partners with Walmart. Hence the official Carrefour flagship (官方旗舰) presence on JD app. That explains Carrefour's half off every 99rmb purchase via JD app. This promotion was advertised above every cashier line at Carrefour a few weeks back.
Shopping in Carrefour China was an extremely unpleasant experience that I doubt they would have dreamed of inflicting on their French customers. What they thought was 'good enough for the Chinese' turned out not to be. Good riddance to them.
@cloudtrapezer wrote: "Maybe if Carrefour stores weren't all claustrophobic, airless, windowless firetraps they might have succeeded."
Yes, plus they are grimy and outdated -- they have been under-investing in upkeep for years. Compared to something like a Target in the US, Carrefours are a slum (and that's not to say that Targets are even that great). I recall them being nicer in France.
Re "airless": I think they also have been trying to cut costs by limiting air conditioning in the summer. There have been several times when I have walked into a Carrefour feeling fine and walked out in a sweat without expending any particular effort there -- and then felt fine again after a few minutes outside.
Carrefour is online with WeChat/meituan. I doubt much will change with Suning's takeover - aside from firing a bunch of people - typical of M&A's.
Not to go off topic in regards to Carrefour but has anyone notice that Metro is more expensive now then when not everybody could get a membership card? I find myself buying things from Taobao instead. Things like Oatmeal(Quaker brand), Hellman's mayonaise,Coffee, etc. They most of the time include free shipping.
Airless holes. I think that sums up a lot of superstores/hypermarkets, in many parts of the world, that are located in a larger multistorey shopping complex. True for Walmart, Homemart, Sunning, Metro, and other places I have visited.
Walmart delivers a similar experience to Carre Four (crowded and claustrophobic underground mazes) but with lower prices. Walmart has also introduced self scanning payment machines so you don't need to queue up to pay, takes only a minute. And I hate the way that Carre Four give you about 4 or five pieces of paper and stupid little stickers for every transaction. It slows the payment process down for everyone and frankly is a waste of paper and ink.