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January 25, 2010

BRAZIL: Carrefour sets out Brazil warchest

Carrefour is set to spend BRL2.5bn (US$1.37bn) to expand its presence in Brazil, particularly in the north and north-east of the country this year.

By Dean Best

Carrefour is set to spend BRL2.5bn (US$1.37bn) to expand its presence in Brazil, particularly in the north and north-east of the country this year.

The French retail giant, the world’s second-largest retailer, is looking at opening more stores and a new distribution centre in northern Brazil.

The company’s plans also include a proposed launch of Internet retailing as the business looks to compete head on with domestic retail behemoth CBD.

CBD, better known through its trading name Grupo Pao de Acucar, booked a jump in annual sales in 2009 and is busy building a venture to sell food and non-food products with Casa Bahia Comercial, Brazil’s largest retailer of durable goods.

CBD and Casas Bahia are also pooling their respective Internet operations to a new company that will be the second-largest Brazilian online retailer.

Carrefour, which has almost 600 stores in Brazil, believes its investment will help it expand in what is the company’s third-largest market by revenue.

“Confirming our leadership position in the Brazilian food sector, investments will be made at the opening of new stores, service units and a widening in of distribution,” Carrefour said. 

“Supported by the consumption potential of the country and meeting the aspirations of customers, our strategy will strengthen the performance of our network nationwide, which already covers 18 states, and to strengthen our presence in the north and north-east.”

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