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Economy

Ten Years After, France’s Carrefour Food Chain Returns to Greece

ATHENS – A decade after joining a flock of other companies in fleeing Greece during a brutal economic and austerity crisis, French retail and food giant Carrefour is coming back with a different scheme.

It has 12,225 stores in more than 30 countries but couldn’t make it in Greece when the crisis drove down buying power as people were hit with big pay cuts, tax hikes, slashed pensions and record unemployment.

The group said it had signed a new franchise deal with Retail & More, a subsidiary of AVE-owned TeleUnicom, with the aim to “relaunch the banner in Greece and offer Carrefour products to Greek customers and tourists,” said the site Fruitnet.

Greek media reports said the venture will focus primarily on small-scale retail formats by working with local operators instead of the hypermarkets that the company had before in some locations in Greece.

“The Carrefour brand and products are well known to Greek customers and we are very excited to bring them the best of Carrefour,” said Carrefour’s Executive Director of International Partnership Patrick Lasfargues.

“TeleUnicom will give us the best platform to enter this market quickly and efficiently. By setting up in Greece in 2022, Carrefour Partenariat International maintains its strong development dynamic in new geographies,” he also said.

Vasilis Stasinoulias, who served as chief executive of Carrefour-Marinopoulos from 2008-11 and will head the new deal said that, “We are very happy to relaunch the Carrefour brand in Greece. Greek consumers will have the opportunity to experience Carrefour’s omnichannel ecosystem, which offers quality products and services accessible to all.”

Carrefour formed Marinopoulos Super Markets in 1995 as a joint venture with Marinopoulos Group but the French firm gave up on Greece when the economic crisis overwhelmed the country. 

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