Finnish group sold Russian retail business to BVI-owned company

Finland’s second-largest retail company Kesko Oyj announced that it will sell its loss-making grocery business in Russia to local hypermarket group Lenta, whose parent company is wholly owned by British Virgin Islands-registered Lenta Ltd. Kesko is selling the business for 156 million euros just four years after opening its first food store in Russia. The business had 11 stores in St Petersburg and surroundings, and had sales of 106 million euros and operating loss of 14 million euros last year.

Inderes Equity Research said in a note to investors that the transaction price is good taking into account the conditions. Shares in Kesko rose 9.5 per cent while Lenta shares were down 1.0 percent. The low cost Russian retailer is going to provide revised guidance on completion of the acquisition, which is expected on November 30.

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