The History of Carrefour

The History of Carrefour
The origins of Carrefour date back to 1959 when the company was established in France by the Fournier and Defforey families.

The shops were all located on thoroughfares; hence the name “Carrefour.” In other words, the name signifies that is convenient to shop there.

Carrefour opened its first supermarket in Annecy, Haute-Savoie, and at the same time, the LLC Promodis, the forerunner of Promodes, was created.

The company was formed through a merger of two wholesaler families from Normandy, managed by Paul Auguste Halley and Leonor Duval Lemonnier.

In 1963, Carrefour invented a new concept; the hypermarket. The first Carrefour hypermarket opened in Sainte-Genevieve-des-Bois, with a sales area of 2,500 m square, twelve check out and 400 parking spaces.

Fournier Badin and Defforey attended Bernado Trujillo’s seminars in Dayton (Ohio) at the end of the 1950s, and were much influenced by what they heard.

Just a few years later the Promodes supermarkets adopted the Champion retail brand name.

Carrefour opened its first hypermarket outside France in Belgium and the first outside Europe, in Brazil.

In 1972, Promodes hypermarkets adopted the Continent retail brand and convenience stores operated under the Shopi brand.

Carrefour introduced “produit libres” (generic as an early of store brand), which are unbranded products but “just as good and cheaper” and started the development of hard discounting.

The company created the Ed chain in France and Promodes in Spain.

Meanwhile, Promodes branched out into franchising with Champion supermarket.

In 1980s, Carrefour store brand products were introduced. In the 1990s, the internationalization of the company started to increase and new store were opened all over the world.

With a presence in about 30 countries more than half of its sales are generated outside France.

This makes it one of the most international of all food retailers. The group concentrated mainly in three continents: Europe, Latin America and Asia.
The History of Carrefour

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