PARIS — The new chief executive of French retail giant Carrefour SA, Alexandre Bompard, has unveiled a fresh management structure charged with overhauling the retailer.
Out of the 13 top appointments, Bompard has brought in three executives from outside the group, including a banker with experience in the digital sphere. Marie Cheval, who joins from the European online banking services company Boursorama, and who also worked for French banking giant Société Générale, will spearhead Carrefour’s digital transformation.
Jean-Pierre Sivignon, the company’s chief financial officer since 2011, retains his position.
Bompard, who took the helm of Carrefour in July, was credited with charting a future for the struggling books and electronics retailer Fnac, by merging it with Darty, a seller of household goods. Both companies are faced with tough competition from online competitors.
The new executive of the world’s largest grocer after Wal-Mart Stores Inc. faces a challenging task. Financial markets were disappointed in Carrefour‘s first-half results, which took a hit from the tough pricing market in France.
“The first task of this new team will be to define and implement the group’s transformation plan,” said Carrefour on Friday.
In recent years, the retailer has sought to reduce its reliance on business from big-box superstores, as consumers turn to the convenience of shopping closer to home and online. Adding to the challenge is a highly competitive domestic market, where French retailers are under pressure to keep prices down.
Amazon’s recent $1.37 billion takeover of Whole Foods has added urgency to the scramble by grocery retailers trying to find the best formula to appeal to consumers over the long term.
Other key top appointments include Jacques Ehrmann, who will manage assets, international development and innovation, as well as the real estate arm Carmila, and Gérard Lavinay, who will oversee merchandise, supply and formats.
Laurent Vallée will be general secretary. Jérôme Nanty joins from Air France-KLM for human resources. Laurent Glépin comes from Fnac Darty to head communications, and Frédéric Haffner will oversee strategy as well as mergers and acquisitions.
The appointments will be effective Oct. 2.