Is the Auchan Group drawing a line in the Chinese market? This is what the French distributor seems to be doing by selling the SunArt subsidiary to the e-commerce giant Alibaba. For the sum of 3.6 billion US dollars, Alibaba has therefore taken full power over the subsidiary previously shared by the two companies. This partnership began in 2017 on Chinese territory.
Auchan is leaving the Chinese market, which was largely invested with SunArt in 2000
Alibaba has decided to take full ownership of the largest hypermarket operator SunArt. The group will therefore spend more than $ 3 billion to acquire the previous shares of Auchan. Specifically, Alibaba will own the 70.9% stake in A-RT Retail Holdings, an Auchan Holding company. Until then, the company held 51% of the shares in Sun Art.
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This agreement between the two parties comes three years after the partnership between the two companies. Her original goal was to combine her two areas of expertise to form a strategic alliance. Everything to become a global leader in e-commerce and be present in the physical distribution sector. Auchan confirmed the sale of its shares, saying that it had accepted the Chinese giant’s proposal and thereby ceased its activities in China. All of this after establishing “the specificity of the Chinese market”. The French group made it clear: “With this operation and the withdrawal from China, Auchan Retail reaffirms its desire to accelerate the implementation of its Auchan 2022 business plan in its current locations.”
Alibaba continues its investments
In addition to buying back shares in Auchan, Alibaba also plans to buy the rest of SunArt’s shares for $ 17 million Hong Kong, or just over $ 2 million.
In addition to this project, Daniel Zhang, Chairman and CEO of Alibaba, states that despite the “Covid-19 pandemic that is accelerating the digitalization of consumer lifestyles and businesses, this commitment to SunArt helps fuel our commitment.” ” new vision of retail and serving more consumers with a fully integrated experience ”.
By integrating SunArt with its new manager’s platforms, physical stores can offer on-demand delivery in an hour or half an hour thanks to the services of third-party companies. SunArt’s future therefore seems assured in the Chinese market, thanks in particular to Alibaba’s investments. The hypermarket chain plans to open new small stores this year as part of the already busy market.