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French DIY giant to exit Russia

Leroy Merlin’s parent company will transfer its Russian business to local management

French home improvement chain Leroy Merlin is transferring its business in Russia to local management, parent company ADEO announced on Friday.

ADEO began preparations for the move several months ago to comply with international regulations, a press release stated. It added that the transaction will be subject to approval by the relevant authorities in Russia.

“After more than 18 years of activity in Russia, transferring control of Leroy Merlin to the local management should preserve the jobs of the 45,000 employees and ensure that the company’s activity remains at the service of the inhabitants,” the company said.

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Russia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade described Leroy Merlin’s decision as “rational” and promised to provide assistance, RIA Novosti reported.

The Leroy Merlin chain has over 100 stores in more than 60 Russian cities, and the retailer is one of the 10 largest trading companies in the country.

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FILE PHOTO: A branch of The Raiffeisen Bank in Moscow.
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ADEO is part of the French retail giant Association Familiale Mulliez, which also owns the Decathlon sporting goods network and supermarket chain Auchan. Association Familiale Mulliez became a rare example of a major Western company opting to continue business in Russia despite sanctions and pressure from EU authorities to leave the country after Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine.

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Auchan, which is said to have over 40,000 employees and more than 300 stores in the country, is still operating despite sanctions and criticism in the West. Decathlon closed its stores in Russia last June and reports emerged in January that it was looking to sell its business in the country.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

March 24, 2023 at 08:30PM
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