In March, French chain Auchan will open its first 'Minute' store in Europe, in the French municipality of Villeneuve d'Ascq (close to the Belgian border). These compact "container stores" have no registers or staff: shopping is entirely done through smartphone.
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Turmoil has erupted in France when Carrefour's plans to save its ailing hypermarkets were leaked. Several non-food departments will be closed and more stores will be franchised.
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This month marks the introduction of the infamous 'Loi Alimentation' in France. The new law puts a stop to a number of promotional techniques and raises the minimum prices for a number of popular products.
Swedish furniture giant IKEA has announced it will open its first true city centre store in Paris on 6 May. At just 5400 sqm, it will be Ikea's smallest real store ever (excluding pick-up points).
In order to further reduce its debts, French retail group Casino is selling six Géant hypermarkets and quite some real estate.
In France, supermarket group Casino has posted surprisingly good results. The chain itself spoke of the best year of the past five, despite problems with the yellow vest movement.
Vente-Unique, a discount platform for furniture, saw its turnover rise 14 %last year. It is the seventh time in a row they manage a double figure growth.
Amazon is fighting back against the reproaches they received concerning the destruction of millions of unsold goods. The French VAT regulation forces them and their suppliers to destroy the items, the company says.
Every year, Amazon destroys about three million unused products in France alone. Unsold goods that have spent too much time in the distribution centres are thrown away.
Amazon is introducing Continental Europe to its organic food label Whole Foods, at first to visitors to Amazon's sites in France, Germany, Italy and Spain.
French supermarket chain Monoprix announces that from now on its paper flyers belong to the past. The retailer wants to reduce its ecological footprint and therefore focuses on digital communication.
Bernard Darty, co-founder of French electronics chain Darty, has died at age 84. The group was founded in 1957 by Bernard Darty and his brothers Natan and Marcel, but became an international electronics group.
In Paris, Carrefour is testing a new store concept that combines fresh produce and convenience products with digital services and catering. Food is mainly moving towards its web shop.
French chain Day by Day currently has just one store in Belgium where you can buy dry groceries in bulk (and none at all in the Netherlands), but wants to expand to 25 Belgian and 40 Dutch stores in four years' time. "Consumers are ready for us."
The "gilets jaunes" (yellow vests) demonstrations have hit French hypermarkets with a 15 to 25 % turnover loss, retailers see their turnover fall by up to 40 %. E-commerce in turn gets a boost.
French distributor Carrefour will be testing its own registerless store concept next year. Just like pioneer Amazon Go, Carrefour will rely on cameras and facial recognition to achieve a fully automated checkout system.