NANJING, June 23 (Xinhua) -- Chinese retailer giant Suning.com announced Sunday that it had signed an agreement to buy a controlling stake in Carrefour China.
Suning International Group Co., Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Suning.com, will invest 4.8 billion yuan (about 700 million U.S. dollars) to buy an 80 percent equity interest in Carrefour China, according to an announcement released by Suning.com.
Tian Rui, vice president of Suning.com, said the transaction is expected to integrate Suning.com's online-to-offline retail model and logistics network with Carrefour China's strong supply chain and experience in retailing fast-moving consumer goods.
Carrefour Group said in a press release that it will retain a 20 percent stake in Carrefour China and two seats out of seven on Carrefour China's supervisory board after the closing of the transaction, which is expected by the end of this year.
The release said "the strong complementarity between Carrefour China and Suning.com's activities will accelerate the development of Carrefour China," which has been operating a network of 210 hypermarkets and 24 convenience stores since 1995.
The Nanjing-headquartered Suning.com owns one of China's leading e-commerce platforms with more than 400 million users and has opened 8,881 stores in China by the end of last year. The retailer saw its net profit increase 216.2 percent in 2018 to 13.3 billion yuan, thanks to soaring online consumption.