Geoffroy Guichard, a pioneer of convenience commerce.
The history of Casino begins with the establishment in 1860 of a grocer of retail in the old casino of the
Rue des Jardins in Saint-Etienne. The initial name Casino, is kept as an ensign. This establishment becomes the property of Geoffroy Guichard in 1892. August 2, 1898, even if he already has 2 stores of food trade, Geoffroy Guichard founds the Casino Stores Company. Quickly, it's a whole network of convenience trade which develops and meets a true popular passion. In 1900, Casino counts already 50 branches.
Geoffroy Guichard proves to be particularly visionary and precursor. In 1901, it launches a first signed range of products named Casino: it's in fact t the launching of the products with the name of the distributor. In order to present at the housewives the wide interest of the brand name, Casino, launches the "Casino-Brochurer", a monthly magazine of eight pages distributed for free in the associated stores. Always in advance, Guichard invents in 1905 the "Bonus tickets ", first programme of development of consumer loyalty in France. In 1906, Casino opens fabrication foodstuffs manufactures. In 1914, Casino counts 460 branches and 505 concessions. As regards to the social aspects, Geoffroy Guichard institutes in 1920, well before the Popular Front politic group, a system of family benefits for his personal. The target of 1000 branches is reached since 1930. In 1939, Casino counts 1670 branches and 839 concessions. In 1948, Casino opens its first store in self-service, in Saint-Etienne. Since 1959, Casino imposes the stamp of the limit date of sale on all its products before even the publication of a law.
Casino, a group of multi format distribution with food dominance products.
Food Dominance Format
the first Casino supermarket opens in 1960 in Grenoble. In 1970, Casino opens its first Géant Casino hypermarket in Marseille.
The development of Casino is marked by many partnerships and acquisitions, relating at the same time to the development of the group in France and with foreign countries.
In 1990, Casino acquires the « Ruche Méridionale ». In 1992, Casino takes over the activities of the Rallye company which exploits Super Rallye supermarkets, Rallye hypermarkets, and Marest cafeterias. In 1995, Casino signs agreements with Médis, Codim 2, Francap and the Co-operators of Normandy-Picardy. 1996 is the year Casino creates the Spar France structure, whose objective is the development of frankness with convenience stores. In 1997, Casino acquires the Franprix and Leader Price networks and takes a participation of 21,4 % in Monoprix (participation changed to 50 % in 2003).
In April 1999, Casino amalgamates its purchases with Cora via the creation of the Opéra power station, dissolved in 2002. In 1999, the group of Saint-Etienne also takes over 75 mini-markets exploited by Guyenne and Gascogne. In 2000, Casino repurchases 475 convenience stores to the group Auchan. In 2002, Casino creates EMC Distribution, its new power station of purchase.
In February 2004, Casino takes 70 % from the capital amount of the International company
Fruit from France
(IFF) and develops, in partnership with the Italian company IFC, a new ensign of convenience store , Casitalia, whose assortment includes 50 % of transalpine products.
In 2005, the Casino group is present in France on all the food formats, going from the convenience store to the hypermarket. The various ensigns of the Casino group in France are: Small Casino, Spar, Vival, Eco Service, Casitalia, Franprix, Leader Price supermarket Casino, Daily Monop, Monoprix, Géant, Géant Discount and cafeteria Casino.
In foreign countries
The international deployment of Casino starts in 1984 in the United States with the OPA ON Thrifty Mart, a company of "cash and carry".
In 1989, Casino becomes partner of the groups Ahold (Netherlands) and Argyll (Great Britain). In 1996, Casino intensifies its development in Asia via a partnership with Dairy Farm. In 1997, Casino takes a participation of 50 % in the Disco group for hypermarkets exploitation in Uruguay. The same year, Casino acquires the Libertad company established in Argentina and takes over the activities of "cash and carry" from United Grocers in the United States. In 1999, Casino becomes the 2nd distributor in Latin America by taking the control of Big C (Thailand) and while entering to the capital of Exito (Colombia) and of CBD (Brazil). In 2001, Casino takes 33 % of the capital of Vindémia, company established in the Indian Ocean and in Vietnam. In June 2002, Casino finalizes its acquisition operation of 39 % in the Dutch group Laurus.
The principal diversification of Casino concerns the sector of the restoration with the Casino cafeterias growing since 1967 and launching in 1980, the rapid restoration chain Quick, now resold.
Casino manages the majority of the shopping malls of its hypermarkets via
, present in France as much as internationally.
The group Casino jumped also in the car centers, via Auto Service, but ceded this activity to Feu Vert in 1998.
More recently, Casino is interested in the trade of electronics with the websites C-Online, C-MesCourses (launched September 1999 and closed in April 2002) and CDiscount (since 2000).
Casino also launched in 1999 two specialized ensigns, KoMoGo (equipment in data processing, software and video games) and Imagica (photo), but ended t these experiments in 2003.
Casino created in 1999 Easydis, a subsidiary company dedicated to the valorisation of its
logistic. In 2000, Casino took part in the launching of the electronic WorldWildeREtail (WWRE) exchanges platform.
Lastly, Casino created in 2001 Casino Banks, a partnership with Cofinoga.
Assessment in 2005
In France, Casino lhas from now on a notorious competing advantage on the majority of its competitors insofar as it is truly established in the heart of villages and cities; indeed, the consumers currently vote by plebiscite the geographically close stores from their residence. Plus, Casino takes an important presence on the hardware discount format which meets an undeniable success.
In 2004, Casino realised a global consolidated turnover of 23 billion euros, including 80 % carried out in France. At the beginning of 2005, Casino is present in 17 countries (France, Netherlands, Poland, the United States, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Venezuela, Brazil, Colombia, Thailand, Taiwan, Maurice, Vietnam, Madagascar, the Middle East, Morocco) and crossed the line of 9000 stores.