METRO GROUP flags in front of the company's headquarters

Our heritage

Analogue roots, digital mindset – the history of CECONOMY began with an ambitious idea: creating the leading European platform for consumer electronics – with a well-defined business model and a clear focus on customers. 

Rooted in retail

Following the demerger in 2017, Metro AG was renamed CECONOMY AG. The Metro Group came into being in 1996 with the merger of various trading companies, notably the Metro Cash & Carry wholesale stores and Kaufhof Holding AG, which brought majority interests in the holding company of MediaMarkt and Saturn into the group with it. The merger and IPO in 1996 enabled Metro AG to unleash new potential and forge ahead with its expansion. The group quickly became a leading international retail company. 

Moving forwards independently with a clear profile

Following the dawn of the new millennium, Metro Group increasingly focused on further developing individual business models and ramping up e-commerce. Previously comprising 16 sales lines, the portfolio underwent a major focusing process. Following the sale of Galeria Kaufhof in 2015, Metro Group consisted of just three sales lines: Metro Cash & Carry, Real and Media-Saturn. The next logical step to enhance growth, customer focus and entrepreneurialism followed on 31 March 2016, when Metro AG announced its plans to split the group into two independent, publicly quoted market leaders, each with a clear profile. It therefore proposed pooling the wholesale and food business within the newly established Metro and grouping the consumer electronics activities together within CECONOMY. The aim was to give both companies better growth prospects by enabling them to concentrate on their respective industries and customer segments – with a stronger focus, faster decision-making processes, greater flexibility and improved operational efficiency.

Once the analysis phase had successfully been completed, the planned split increasingly took shape: on 5 September 2016, the Management Board of Metro AG resolved to initiate the preparatory measures necessary for the Metro Group demerger. The Supervisory Board agreed to the plans. On 30 September 2016, the company was split pro forma into two separate organisational units. With this, the new CECONOMY management team headed up by designated CEO Pieter Haas also started work.

On 15 December 2016, the two companies unveiled their future strategies as independent firms to investors. The name CECONOMY and the associated brand positioning were also presented to the public for the first time at the Metro Group Capital Markets Day. 

Successful IPO for CECONOMY

At the General Meeting on 6 February 2017, 99.95 per cent of the shareholders present gave the go-ahead for the Metro Group split. The plan was to bring about a separate share listing for CECONOMY by floating Metro Group’s food business on the stock exchange as a new publicly quoted company. When the ‘new Metro’ went public, CECONOMY shares were traded separately on the stock exchange for the first time.

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