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Auchan Hypermarket- The French Retail Revolution


          Auchan is a French Hypermarket chain that opened its first store on U.S. soil in Houston, Texas in 1988. This groundbreaking move for the chain was revolutionary as it was the first hypermarket chain to open in America, later Leedmark, Carrefour, and following American chains Wal-Mart and Kmart with Hypermart USA and American Fare.

          It was such a surprise for me to learn that Auchan actually opened a store in greater Chicago in the suburb of Bridgeview, Illinois in 1989. As it did not last long, because the chain only sold food, among other chains were to strong of competition for it to compete, Auchan closed in 1991 and was bought by Dominick's and converted to an Omni Superstore, owned by Chicago-area Dominick's.




Here is a commercial for Auchan.


          Auchan opened a second store in Houston in September 2000, as only stores stores made for not that strong of a market presence, with so much competition, the company lacked market shares, and prices to compete with local sales, the stores lost money there final years, as Auchan decided to focus on its primary markets and close there U.S. store in January 2003. 



          Here is a link to an article published by Chron in 2003 announcing Auchan is closing there only two U.S. locations in Texas and returning to focus primarily on there French and European markets, as the chains are a bigger hit because malls and shopping centers are not as prevalent in Europe as they are in America, making one stop shopping that was the hypermarket more popular with shoppers there than having a variety of choices to shop as we do in America, which over time, ruined there profit margins.




Here are pictures I am borrowing from a fellow retail blogger, Louisiana and Texas Southern Malls ans Retail, which he posted these pictures of an abandoned Auchan outside Houston in 2011. This store still remains vacant, although it was used as a makeshift shelter for Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and Hurricane Ike in 2008 because of its massive space.

Logo is still visible.





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