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The Wall Street Journal reports that Carrefour CEO Lars Olofsson will also become the French retailer’s chairman, as Amaury de Seze has announced that he will step down.

The move may streamline the executive suites at Carrefour, the world’s second largest retailer, but it won’t make Olofsson’s job any less daunting. As the Journal writes, “He is one year into a multi-pronged three-year turnaround on which his job depends. One step of the transformation was accomplished at the shareholder meeting, when investors approved the spinoff of the Dia discount unit. Dia will be listed on the Madrid stock exchange on July 5, and each Carrefour investor will receive a Dia share for each Carrefour share.

“Yet Mr. Olofsson is also juggling several other projects as part of the overhaul. He is renovating the hypermarket chain in Europe to the tune of EUR1.5 billion, and rolling out thousands of Carrefour-branded groceries. He has faced setbacks in what he calls an ‘ambitious’ plan, including a management shakeup at the core French operations.

“The overhaul is necessary to reignite consumer traffic in Carrefour's French stores, which accounted for 39% of its 90 billion euros in sales last year. Carrefour is facing stiff price competition from more nimble rivals.”
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