Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang said, "By fully integrating online and physical channels together with our partners, we look forward to delivering an original and delightful shopping experience to Chinese consumers".
SURRY has 450 hypermarkets across China, operating under its RT-Mart and Auchan brands.
Alibaba has been bolstering its presence in traditional retail over the past couple of years.
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Alibaba has invested upwards of US$9.3 billion in brick-and-mortar stores since 2015, and has launched many unstaffed concept shops in the past year.
As part of an association with Auchan Retail and Ruentex Group, Alibaba would acquire shares from Ruentex while Auchan Retail would increase its stake in sun Art, the three companies said in a joint statement.
Taobao China Holding, a subsidiary of Alibaba, has agreed to buy a direct 26 per cent stake from Kofu and Concord Greater China for HK$16.1 billion, at HK$6.5 a share, while it will also buy a 19.9 per cent stake in Auchan Retail, which owns 51 per cent of Sun Art, for HK$6.3 billion, also at HK$6.5 per share, according to an exchange filing by Sun Art. As part of the deal, France's Auchan Retail SA will raise its stake in the Hong Kong-listed company to a similar level, and form an alliance with the internet giant to tackle the same Chinese food retail sector Wal-Mart is targeting.
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Walmart, the world's largest retailer, is focused on turning around a sluggish Chinese operation through a partnership with JD.com, marrying online commerce with data and combining their network of warehouses and cold storage for same-day delivery to customers. In January, it led a bid to take department store chain Intime Retail Group private for up to HK$19.8 billion.
With 20 Hema supermarkets already rolled out in China, the group continues to make one after another strategic alliance, first with China's biggest supermarket operator Billian Group and later, with a stake in Lianhua Supermarket, which happens to be Billian Group's largest chain of Supermarkets.
Data from Kantar Worldpanel shows that Sun Art now holds an 8.2% market share in the grocery segment.
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Shares of Hong Kong-listed Sun Art, which were suspended on November 13, resumed on Monday and were down 5.3 percent in morning trade, while the benchmark index .HSI was flat. The latest deal will provide Sun Art with an access to Alibaba's digital ecosystem.