Italy, Carrefour Urbano: A New Supermarket Model.

October 11, 2016

Carrefour is developing in Turin a new supermarket model, based on extreme service to customers, open every day, even at night.

By guest contributor, Antonello Vilardi, ITALY – RETAIL WATCH (

The investment of the French retailer is coordinated to satisfy the urban catchment in need of quality services as well as in food and non-food items.

Carrefour, in this case, proves brand with clear and distinct market position.

In Turin, in Corso Turati nr.29/D, after the recent renovation, lasting one month, Carrefour has chosen the “urban function”, shifting the main focus on “quality of service” compared to the “convenience”.

Some numbers.

785 square meters;

8,500 articles in assortment

about € 130,000 weekly sales in the absence of seasonal peaks (about $ 145,647), with the forecast to reach around € 520,000 (about $ 582,643) in the month and € 6.24 million in the year (about $ 6.992 million), therefore, results in line with objectives official oscillating between € 4 and 7 million ($ 4481,857 - $ 7843,456).

18 total employees;

the "square of the fresh", the nerve center of the layout, accounts on average of the total turnover for 35%;

products of Large Food Consumption and non-food valid for 40%;

the refrigerated perishable free service account for 25%;

moderate, but significant for the social aspects it contains, it is rather the incidence of "Market Café": 1%.

Operational functions.

The reserve of goods takes up the entire area of the store on the lower level, consequently the products go into the box sale by means of a lift truck for heavy loads;

supplies are followed daily by the logistics platform located at Rivalta, about 20 kilometers away.

“Bread and Pastries” are free service, with appropriate functional dispenser, the counter of the “cut of meats and cheeses” is assisted by staff (however closed at night), "Fishmonger" and "Butcher" are takeaways.


Blue Box: bench for professional services, where three operators alternate from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM in order to ensure immediate assistance through contact with specialized craftsmen: shoemakers, tailors, blacksmiths, electricians, plumbers, maintenance of air conditioners and boilers.

It is also offered a laundry service, with a good response from customers.

It is possible to pay the postal bulletins

it is possible to use the service "Ticketone", for the pre-sale of tickets for cultural and sporting events.

The city of Turin has enabled the placement of a "totem" to request and print documents.

The context, as a whole, admits to make photocopies, print photos, pick up purchases made "on line", and even recharge cell phones

before making entry into the store, it is also possible stopping pet animals in a small area, with two bowls, whose curious name is "DOG BAR".

Opening continued 24 hours 24: the supermarket is open every day, even at night, without any interruption.

It is allowed home delivery shopping.

Lunchbox: option to order "on line" a basket for lunch, pick up in-store and eventually consume the area dedicated.

Market Cafè: not served, where customers pay in the cash desk of supermarket and then consume coffee, juices and pastries, with the ability to use tablet with free internet connection.

Corner of Sushi: appreciated reference of ethnic cuisine, ultimately inevitable in the spaces governed by Carrefour. Sushi comes from the Japanese culinary tradition, but has a contagious worldwide distribution: in Italian supermarkets it is beginning to be appreciated. 

It is a single dish made with rice and raw fish, which obviously can highlight aspects of convenience in use, unique flavors and freshness of the ingredients. 


The "urban" format includes the CARREFOUR PAYBACK loyalty card, declined, as well as on hypermarkets, even at points of sale with insignia "Carrefour Market" and "Carrefour Express".

The initiative involves many partners active in various sectors; the corporate campaign is enhanced by the ability to promote "short collections".

Example, in this sense, is the case of the "Marvel Superheroes", effective from September 12 to November 5, which provides for each € 20 spending (about $ 22,40), presenting the loyalty card, the chance to receive one of 24 MEGAPOPZ.

The collection acquires greater prominence through the purchase of HELICARRIER to contain characters, priced at € 2,99 (about $ 1,12).

It is a campaign that emulates the actions carried out in Italy by ESSELUNGA (with ROLLINZ) and LIDL (with STIKEEZ), but nevertheless fully convincing to be highly attractive in relation to the number of customers where the natural enthusiasm for the collections and the move driven by the interests of children are decisive for the purchasing decisions.

The judgment of top management.

Stephane Coum, Carrefour Supermarket Business Unit Manager, with leadership functions in Italy after a rich international experience, gained as well as in France, in states such as Turkey, China, Malaysia and Singapore, enhances the "urban" format to the point of not being able to identify similarities elsewhere in the "basic concept". 

Coum praises the exclusivity that Carrefour has been able to express in Italy and announces the development on the cities of Milan, Rome and Cremona.

The characteristics to identify the exact "locations", as in the case of Turin, will be based on ten indicators carefully circumscribed and studied by members of his staff, with the ultimate goal to stand for the "closeness to the people", an essential element for develop a real "urban community".

Here the brand Carrefour will aim to become a symbol, to evoke "social events", "proximity really effective", "ongoing opportunities" that go beyond just low price, however, easily imitated by competitors.

These meanings, in their balanced complex, represent the goal more difficult and rewarding: the approval by the customer, "le vrai roi"!