Carrefour: A Future First Ecommerce Transformation

The Challenge

Grocery retail in France is facing seismic shifts: French shoppers are going to the traditional hypermarkets less and less; the shift toward healthy, locally-sourced food has become mainstream; and online grocery is accelerating but is highly competitive, combining leading local players, niche specialists and international retailers, such as Amazon, who are entering the market through partnerships.

Carrefour had great assets: a strong brand, an unparalleled mix of store formats and a loyal customer base. Yet their online assets didn’t play well together, mirroring organisational complexity with a tendency to become silos. Their digital footprint was fragmented and change didn’t always scale to make a significant impact.

The Solution

In January 2018, Carrefour’s newly appointed CEO announced a five billion euro turnover target for ecommerce over five years (20 percent of overall sales) and a key partnership with Publicis Sapient to drive digital business transformation.

Our goal was to enable Carrefour to behave like an enterprise startup. We began by shaping a strategy to create a cohesive, common digital vision that unified their digital assets to drive ecommerce growth, supporting their food transition strategy and building the foundation for the future—mobile, voice and personalisation at scale. We did this by introducing a new scaled delivery model and breaking silos through integrated, diverse agile teams.


After only six months, the first version of their new ecommerce platform was live. A year later the strategy had proven successful. The unified digital assets are driving massive ecommerce traffic, customer satisfaction is at its highest and their conversion rate has registered steady growth. But more importantly, the pace of change has massively accelerated with the capacity to deliver enhancements every day without downtime. Today, customer-centric, evidence-based incremental transformation is a norm at Carrefour. The teams measure, iterate and swiftly react to customer feedback and behaviour.

350+ “Projects” Consolidated Into Agile Squads

6 months to
Release MVP

x1.5 conversion
rate since launch

1 week major releases (without downtime)





Publicis Sapient
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Publicis Sapient

We bring a start-up mindset and agile methods to both established companies and the public sector to unlock value in ways that delight their customers and improve their operational effectiveness. Our approach to transformation is grounded in a view of both the company and the customers simultaneously, and is a unique fusing of strategy and consulting, experience and engineering with an enduring culture of problem-solving creativity.

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