* FGTA-FO backs Prioux in letter to Arnault
* Carrefour working on successor for Plassat
* SocGen's Bernardo Sanchez Incera also seen as candidate
By Dominique Vidalon
PARIS, Feb 21 Noel Prioux, the head of Carrefour
France, got the backing of the main trade union at French
retailer Carrefour on Tuesday to succeed chairman and
chief executive Georges Plassat.
Some investors have expressed concerns about uncertainty
over who will replace Plassat, whose term at Europe's largest
retailer ends in May 2018, investment bank Societe Generale said
In a letter to Bernard Arnault, who runs luxury goods group
LVMH and whose family holding company is Carrefour's
second-largest shareholder, the FGTA-FO union said Prioux was
the only candidate able to "maintain a climate of social
development so necessary to the group's future".
FO-FGTA secretary general Dejan Terglav also asked Bernard
Arnault for a meeting, in the letter addressed to Arnault, a
copy of which was seen by Reuters.
The union has no vote at board level, but employees hold 1
percent of the shares in Carrefour, which has not given a
deadline for its search for Plassat's successor.
Carrefour, which employs more than 360,000 people worldwide,
including more than 100,000 in France, is widely expected to
find a candidate by the time of its annual shareholders meeting
in the second quarter of this year.
SocGen deputy CEO Bernardo Sanchez Incera has been
cited in media reports as another possible successor, along with
Carrefour's China boss Thierry Garnier, Carrefour Spain boss
Pascal Clouzard, Carrefour's Brazil chief Charles Desmartis and
group chief financial officer Pierre-Jean Sivignon.
Staff representatives worry that a new boss could undertake
drastic changes, including job cuts, as Carrefour struggles in
France, where growth at its hypermarkets slowed in the fourth
The Moulin family, owner of French department store Galeries
Lafayette, is Carrefour's top shareholder with an 11.51 percent
stake, followed by Groupe Arnault, with an 8.74 percent stake.
The family of Brazilian retail tycoon Abilio Diniz, also has
an 8.05 percent stake in Carrefour.
Since taking over as CEO in 2012, Plassat has focused on
price cuts, expanding into convenience stores and renovating
stores to boost growth.
(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta and