La Rinascente and Accenture Form New Organization to Manage Gruppo Rinascente's Finance & Account Processing and Technology Services

MILAN; June 11, 2003 La Rinascente and Accenture today announced that the two companies will provide finance, account processing and technology services to all divisions of Gruppo Rinascente through a company that will include the employees, operations and infrastructure of the retail group’s existing service center operations.

As part of the agreement, Accenture will manage the shared services company, which will also provide payroll processing and other administrative services, as well as technology support for these areas. Accenture will own 80 percent of the company, and La Rinascente will own the remaining 20 percent.

This agreement reflects Gruppo Rinascente’s strategy to focus its divisions on business development, while teaming with third parties that provide high-quality services in complementary areas. This will free the Italian retail group from the daily management of essential, but non-strategic, functions enhancing efficiencies and competitive positioning by enabling the company to focus on its core business.

The arrangement also supports Accenture’s strategy to grow its business process outsourcing capabilities in finance and accounting, human resources and information systems.

The new operation is expected to be operational in July 2003, subject to regulatory approval.

About Gruppo Rinascente
Gruppo Rinascente is one of the largest retailers in Italy with 1,852 points of sale and more than 30,000 employees. In 2002, Gruppo Rinascente generated revenues of €6.146 billion and investments of €304 million. Gruppo Rinascente is run by Eurofind, which is jointly owned by Ifil SpA and Auchan, a French multi-national with with 2002 revenues of €27.6 billion. Gruppo Rinascente owns and operates a number of well-known brands including: La Rinascente department stores, Upim stores, the Auchan “mega-marts” and Sma, Cityper and Punto Sma supermarket chains. The area of home improvement is led by SIB (Società Italiana Bricolage, which is 50% owned by Gruppo Rinascente and 50% by Gruppo Leroy Merlin), which owns and operates the Bricocenter and Leroy Merlin brands. Gruppo Rinascente also manages Galleria Auchan malls and (owns and operates) the online food shopping site Io Vorrei.

About Accenture
Accenture is the world’s leading management consulting and technology services company. Committed to delivering innovation, Accenture collaborates with its clients to help them realize their visions and create tangible value. With deep industry expertise, broad global resources and proven experience in consulting and outsourcing, Accenture can mobilize the right people, skills, alliances and technologies. With more than 75,000 people in 47 countries, the company generated net revenues of $11.6 billion for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2002. Its home page is