- Martine Fuxa
[1to1 Monaco] The Carrefour Group and Rakuten announce a unique partnership
Carrefour will launch its non-food products shop on the Rakuten marketplace in April. With this partnership, the two players want to capitalise on their respective strengths to consolidate their omnichannel strategies and customer loyalty.
During a two-way conference, Elodie Perthuisot, Carrefour's Chief E-commerce, Digital Transformation & Data Officer, and Fabien Versavau, CEO of Rakuten France, announced the launch of a new partnership at One to One Monaco. The retail giant Carrefour and the Japanese giant have come up with synergies to join forces.
"What Carrefour does best historically is to open shops. We decided to open a new kind of shop, 100% digital, at Rakuten", explains Elodie Perthuisot. "The challenges facing retailers are numerous. Many consumers have found their way back to the shops and at the same time they are developing more expectations in terms of hybridisation and fluidity of the on and offline pathways", notes Fabien Versavau. Faced with these major challenges, these two players have the opportunity to "build more sustainable and responsible growth strategies.
Five major challenges
Because, according to the directors, digital will continue to constitute an essential reservoir of growth in the years to come. "We believe that 2023 will be a pivotal year with five challenges: inflation, omnichannel, loyalty, new modes of consumption, and the rise of marketplaces." Of course, in times of inflation, loyalty becomes an increasingly important issue. "42% of French people say they are inclined to accept loyalty offers and the ecosystem is starting to move. Until recently, Europe was the poor relation of loyalty in the world", notes Fabien Versavau. In fact, in North America and Asia, the proportion of customer journeys based on loyalty mechanisms remains much higher than in Europe. Finally, as far as the platformisation of the retail economy is concerned, here again, the stakes are high. The new consumers, starting with the millennials and the GenZ, are keen to use this type of commerce which, according to McKinsey, could account for 70% of global e-commerce by 2025.
The union of two sector leaders
To get the best of both worlds, retail, and platforms, the partnership announced will allow Carrefour and its 14 million loyal customers to integrate Rakuten's loyalty programme as well as the marketplace with 15 million visitors per month. By joining Rakuten's loyalty programme (Club R), Carrefour's customers will be rewarded with a cashback system allowing them to save between 5% and 35% of the amount of their orders. Carrefour should bring to Rakuten "its expertise in the digital field, and propose a wide variety of non-food products to enrich its catalogue". Ultimately, with this operation, the timetable for which is set for April 2023, the two players are aiming to find new sources of growth in the long term. By starting with a few product categories, learning from them, and tomorrow, perhaps, expanding to other strategic areas, such as retail media, or the second-hand market...