The strategic partnership will enable the France-based supermarket chain to tap into Google’s expertise in artificial intelligence, cloud, and new shopping channels like voice, while bringing its own expertise in logistics and sales.
“This alliance makes Carrefour the first partner of Google on grocery e-commerce in Europe, creating a strong bond between the two companies,” Carrefour’s chief executive, Alexandre Bompard, said.
“It allows us to accelerate our digital evolution and get a head start in deploying the omnichannel approach we want to offer our customers.”
The retailer is set to launch a new Google Shopping website amidst the broader roll out of new shopping experiences across Google platforms.
By early 2019, shoppers in France will also be able to buy Carrefour products through Google Assistant and Google Home and have items delivered to their homes or pick them up in-store.
Vice president and managing director of Google France, Sébastien Missoffe, said this is in line with the way today’s consumers want to shop.
“Shoppers today are saddled with disconnected experiences through the shopping journey, which often lead to abandoned shopping carts and low customer satisfaction and loyalty. Customers want assertive, simple and personalised experiences that help them make decisions on what to buy, assist with easily building baskets across surfaces, and provide a seamless checkout,” he said.
Carrefour this summer will open an innovation lab in Paris in partnership with Google Cloud, where the retailer’s engineers will work side-by-side with Google’s artificial intelligence experts to create new consumer experiences.
The retailer has also developed a training program to incorporate a culture of quick decision-making and agility within the group. The initiative has been in progress since the beginning of the year and aims to train more than a thousand employees with the support of Google Cloud in six months.
Carrefour is also accelerating its use of Google’s cloud platform infrastructure and deploy programs including Gmail and Drive to its more than 160,000 employees.
The common objective of the partnership is to offer new and innovative commerce experiences in France, whether that’s in a store, online or on smartphones, Carrefour said in a statement.