For starters, the store is brightly lit and decorated with garish red and yellow PoS materials, all designed to appeal to the Chinese consumer, according to Jean-Luc Chereau, president of Carrefour China. The red and yellow materials are used to signpost promotions ­ of which there are 1,000 running at any one time. One of Carrefour's strongest selling points is its low prices, a fact it markets heavily both in the store and to the 570,000 people who live in the Putuo district. A neat idea in the non food department are the markers put on the floor to indicate where consumers can find the cheapest line. The Wuning store ­ which opened in December 1997 ­ is also strong on retail theatre, particularly in its food department where there are superb displays of fresh product. The atmosphere here is further enhanced by having plenty of staff on hand to shout out details of their wares to passing shoppers. It is important to provide a high level of theatre in store, says Chereau, because Chinese consumers love the vibrancy of local markets, where they still buy much of their fresh produce. He ranks such markets among his biggest competitors. With fresh playing such a big part in the Chinese culture, it's not surprising that the back wall of the store follows the Carrefour format and is dedicated to serveover counters. They complement the store's large fruit and veg area, and the standalone fish department. Surprisingly, the food department is on the ground floor of the hypermarket. Chereau explains that high land prices forced Carrefour to build the store on two floors inside the shell of a former factory. Although that layout is not ideal, the store is performing well, generating annual sales of ¥400m (£33.7m). The space is split 60:40 in favour of food. The mix has been changing as Chinese consumers have started buying more non food items. And it will continue to evolve. Carrefour's hypermarket sells everything from magazines and books to kids' clothes and towels. Sales of electrical goods are also booming, as this is one way consumers can show off their new found wealth. Mobile phones are a top line and they are sold from a special counter at the front of the store. There is a large health and beauty area on the top floor, and a Chinese pharmacy in the food department. Of the 80,000 lines stocked only 120 are French (most of that is wine). {{SPOTLIGHT }}