Contrast of Carrefour and Wal-Mart

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Compare and contrast the strategies of Carrefour and Wal-Mart in the Chinese market

Since the American entrepreneur, Clarence Saunders, opens his first Piggly Wiggly store in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1916, the concept of  self-service store has swept the globe. With the largest population in the world, China is expected to be the world’s biggest retail market which is now already the world’s fastest-growing market.( Anon, 2011:1) As the world’s first and second largest retail groups, Carrefour and Wal-Mart are one their way piling in. However, with 5000 years of traditional history and 30 years of planned economy, china has already formed its own market tradition. Though, the two giants both need to face the special Chinese market, in some aspects, they use different strategies and have different market feedback. This essay will illustrate the similar strategies the two retail groups have been using and also analyze the ways they use to adapt to the Chinese market differently.

To begin with, for opening the Chinese market, Carrefour and Wal-Mart both choose to cooperate with the local commercial. $1 billion was given to Wal-Mart’s 100 hypermarkets’ supply chain, ranging from food to electronics (Shu-Ching, 2010, P.1). Similarly, Carrefour also tried to adapt to local conditions, i.e. cooperate with Lianhua Supermarket Company in Shanghai. The reasons why they cooperate with local partners is not just because of the legal considerations, but also to have a deep understanding of the difficult and complex Chinese market (Peter, 2006, P.6). Nevertheless, they use different strategies according to different company development plan. Wal-Mart focuses more on the long term partnership nationally or even internationally. Considering the different regional culture and local policy, Carrefour changes partnerships by local markets (Peter, 2006, P.6). Furthermore, Carrefour adopts different strategy throughout all its global market, focusing on locally sourced products,...
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