Amazon targets European grocery market with Monoprix partnership

Amazon has secured a partnership with French retailer Monoprix, allowing shoppers to make purchases through the Amazon Prime Now app and a dedicated virtual store

Monoprix's partnership with Amazon should strengthen it against competitors such as Leclerc, which has recently launched a food delivery service in Paris

Amazon and French supermarket chain Monoprix announced a partnership on March 26 that could enable the US company to make further inroads into the European grocery market. As part of the collaboration, Monoprix shoppers in Paris and the surrounding area will be able to purchase goods through Amazon’s Prime Now app, as well as a dedicated virtual store.

The move is the latest attempt by Amazon to secure a foothold in the food retail sector. Last year, the e-commerce giant purchased US retailer Whole Foods for $13.7bn but, aside from a partnership with UK-based supermarket Morrisons, its European footprint is small.

The move is the latest attempt by Amazon to secure a foothold in the food retail sector

Amazon’s tie-up with Monoprix will certainly improve matters on that front, and Jean-Charles Naouri, Chairman and CEO of Monoprix’s parent company, Casino Group, believes that his organisation also stands to benefit from the new relationship.

“Thanks to this unique partnership between Amazon and Monoprix, Casino Group reinforces its omnichannel distribution strategy and gets even closer to its customers and their needs,” Naouri explained. “This commercial partnership is a new milestone in Casino Group strategy to innovate ever more for tomorrow’s urban commerce.”

French supermarkets have been looking for ways to develop their e-commerce solutions for some time now and Amazon has proven keen to offer a helping hand. The online retailer had been linked with Monoprix rival Leclerc in recent months and has been offering its Amazon Prime Now delivery service to Parisians since 2016.

With another rival, Carrefour, investing $3.48bn in its digital commerce division over the next five years, Monoprix’s Amazon announcement could be viewed as a major coup. However, Fabienne Caron, an analyst at Kepler Cheuvreux, has described the partnership as a “very defensive move” and it’s difficult to argue with that assessment given the increasing competition in the sector. In particular, it should help Monoprix fight off a renewed challenge from Leclerc, which recently announced the launch of its own food delivery service in the French capital.