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Business deals

China retail steps into data-driven future with Carrefour sale

Once powerful foreign players sidelined as customer information becomes weapon

SHANGHAI -- By acquiring Carrefour's China business, is gaining access to crucial customer data that would help shape a strategy to challenge e-commerce giants Alibaba Group Holding and Tencent Holdings and expand its retail presence.

"2019 will be an important year for us at Suning," Suning Holdings Group Chairman Zhang Jindong said to employees in mid-February, after the Chinese New Year holiday. "We will expand our business portfolio to all areas of retail."

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