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List of supermarkets

Carrefour

Carrefour logo

Carrefour SA is an international supermarket group Headquartered in France, with a global network of supermarkets. It is the second largest retail group in the world in terms of revenue after Wal-mart.

The first Carrefour store is located in Annecy near a crossroads (carrefour in French). This is the smallest Carrefour store in the world.

The group was created by Marcel Fournier and Louis Defforey and grew into a network from this first sale's point. In 1999 it has merged with Promodès. As of 2003, they were the world's second biggest supermarket chain, after Wal-Mart.

The Carrefour group pioneered the concept of a hypermarket: a large supermarket combined with a department store. They opened the first hypermarket in 1962 in Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois, near Paris in France.

It operates mainly in the European Union, Brazil and Romania, but also has shops in North Africa and Asia.

In April 1976 Carrefour stripped around fifty basic food products (oil, biscuits, milk, pastes...) of any brand and sold them at bottom price. These Produits libres (Free Products) caused a sensation. At the time this marketing strategy was considered by some in France to be "anti-capitalist", presumably following a Francophone line of thought that the natural instinct of capitalists is never to risk a profit margin by undermining the power of brands. Certainly no-one has ever suggested that Wal-Mart or Tesco are "anti-capitalist" for doing similar things. Jean Mothes, one of the executives of Perrier, wrote in "Investir" that Carrefour did much more to accelerate the swap to a socialist-led government than Edmond Maire, Georges Marchais, François Mitterrand and Georges Séguy joined together.

See also

  • List of French companies

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