EGYPT – In Egypt, the food retail market is one of the most competitive and fast-growing sectors.

While new players seek to enter the industry to take a portion of the pie, veteran players are focused on consolidating their presence.

The Emirati conglomerate Majid Al Futtaim (MAF), exclusive holder of the Carrefour franchise in Egypt, has announced an investment of 250 million pounds (US$15.9 million) in the current year to strengthen its presence in the North African market.

This envelope will mainly allow the company to open 10 new outlets, which will bring the total number of its branches to 69.

According to Philippe Péguilhan, Country Manager of Carrefour Egypt, the new openings will comprise of hypermarkets, supermarkets and supeco which are low-cost hybrid concept of traditional supermarkets and ‘cash & carry’ in a warehouse environment.

In addition, it plans to expand its online sales through Carrefour digital platform, along with expanding its Dark Store warehouses, which aim to meet the needs of Carrefour’s e-commerce customers quickly.

Peguilhan believes that competition with grocery selling apps and websites is healthy for the Egyptian market, especially as the market is large and accommodates many service providers.

He explained that online sales account for 6.5% of Carrefour’s total sales. The company also plans to increase them to about 10% by the end of this year.

In the land of pharaoh, Carrefour is currently the 4th major player in the distribution market behind the trio Kazyon, BIM and Mansour Group with 59 outlets comprising of 14 hypermarkets and 45 supermarkets.

“Majid Al-Futtaim Retail has invested EGP 2.3 billion (US$146m) to date in Egypt. 2022 marks the 20th year of Carrefour’s existence in the Egyptian market.

In 2021, Carrefour hired 1,354 employees; whereas in Majid Al Futtaim Retail, we have 6,788 Egyptian employees to date, 138 of which are special needs, and we are planning to hire 204 more this year.

Going forward, we plan to open new stores in Alexandria, New Al-Alamain, the Red Sea, and Delta,” Peguilhan noted.

Crossing boarders, the French retailer, is seeking to set up shop in Israel following the signing of a franchise agreement with Israeli company Electra Consumer Products. 

As part of the move, Electra said it will rebrand local supermarket chain Yeinot Bitan and Mega supermarket chains into the Carrefour brand just six months after purchasing them.

 The franchise agreement with Carrefour is set to be for 20 years, with the possibility of extending it for another 20, according to report by Israeli daily Haaretz.

Carrefour’s first Israel branches are set to open by the end of 2022 kicking off a process that will see more than 150 Yeinot Bitan Mega locations converted to Carrefour-branded stores, alongside the opening of new Carrefour locations. 

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