(Yicai Global) Feb. 7 -- Carrefour China reportedly said product shortages at its Beijing stores and restrictions on gift card use mainly resulted from changes the hypermarket chain operator made to deal with supply chain issues after shoppers rushed to buy.
Carrefour China, majority owned by retail giant Suning.Com, was forced to temporarily limit purchases because the changes it implemented in some cities led to rumors about the company exiting the local market and scalpers dealing in its gift cards, the retailer was cited as saying by The Beijing News yesterday.
Carrefour China is transforming and upgrading to meet challenges and is promoting a new supply chain model that includes distribution, agencies, and tie-ups, the company said, adding that in the spring deployment meeting, it decided to provide customers with integrated online and offline shopping and services. As a result, some stores are being revamped and upgraded, with the new model outlets set to land first in Shanghai and Beijing.
As its supply chain adjusts, more and more products, as well as some appliances from Suning, can be bought through various ways, including gift cards, Carrefour China noted.
Carrefour entered China in 1995 and expanded quickly early on, securing a relatively large market share. But earnings began to shrink as competition increased. In 2019, the French retailer sold 80 percent of its loss-making China business to Jiangsu-based Suning for CNY4.8 billion (USD699 million at the time).
Carrefour had 151 stores in China as of Sept. 30, after 54 closed in the first three quarters of the year, according to Suning’s financial report released on Nov. 1. Carrefour China’s net loss widened almost 14 percent to CNY662 million (USD98 million) in the first half of 2022 from a year earlier.
Editor: Futura Costaglione