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April 4, 2019

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Retailer in talks with potential partners

Metro China says it is talking with potential investors from the retail or tech sectors about possible investment or partnerships.

“We want to bring in partners that can accelerate our growth in China and contribute to further strengthen our strategy in online-to-offline and corporate sourcing,” Metro China President Claude Sarrailh told reporters yesterday.

He did not give details.

Metro aims to open at least eight new stores in China in the next two years — four of this year.

Its China sales added 2.7 percent in the fiscal year ended September, and corporate customers accounted for 40 percent of sales.

By integrating its online presence with physical stores, the company would be joining a notable trend among local and multinational retailers as they face increasing pressure from digital competitors.

RT Mart is working with Alibaba to deliver fresh food for the e-commerce giant's retail shoppers, and Tencent and Yonghui Superstores Co hold a minority stake in French retailer Carrefour’s China unit.

Catering business targeting canteens, restaurants, welfare and gifting for corporate clients has been a focus for Metro Group’s global business, and Sarrailh said the company also hopes to localize its operations by introducing new models and technology partners.

“Our business is healthy and more profitable than our retail counterparts here and we want to accelerate our business model,” he said.


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