Retailer Lenta to buy Utkonos

Retailer Lenta to buy Utkonos

Photo: https://retail-loyalty.org/

The chain of Lenta hypermarkets announced its intention to acquire Utkonos, an online grocery delivery service. The plan is to create a leading platform in the E-grocery segment, covering all key customer needs and market segments.

Utkonos is an online retailer, based in Moscow. It is a first mover in the E-grocery segment in Russia. Last year, the share of this online food delivery service in the Moscow market was about 10%. E-grocery is the sale of everyday goods such as food, drinks, baby food, household chemicals, associated goods, etc. on the internet.

An agreement on the acquisition of Utkonos has been already singed. The owners of Lenta will buy 100% of the stake in Novy Impulse-50 from Severgroup, owned by businessman Alexei Mordashov. Severgroup is also a shareholder of Lenta. It owns 77.99% of the company's shares which amounts to 78.73% of voting rights.

The deal will be financed by an additional issue of Lenta shares, and their placement by private subscription in favor of Severgroup. The base price of the deal is 20 billion rubles ($271.84 mln.)

The acquisition will give a chance to Lenta to compete more effectively on Moscow's online market, particularly in the above-average and premium price segments. In addition, following the transaction, Lenta will significantly increase its share of the online market by integrating an additional platform for product delivery with competitive advantages.

Until this day, online retailer Utkonos achieved high results on the markets of online sales in Moscow and Moscow region. According to Roskachestvo, the national system of quality monitoring, in 2019, the mobile application Utkonos was recognized as one of the best among applications for the delivery of products. Moreover, it became a leader in terms of functionality in the annual study of digital customer experience m-grocery rating-2019. In 2020, Utkonos became Brand No.1 in the Service and Service category. In addition, based on last year's results, Utkonos became a leader in the Moscow and Moscow region markets with a share of 18% in the turnover of online food sales.

More than half of the shares in the online retailer Utkonos belong to Alexei Mordashov. Previously, the Cypriot Uniferm Limited owned 100% of the company. Prior to that, Mordashov was not a direct owner of the online hypermarket, although back in 2014 it was reported that Mordashov financially supported Utkonos.

This is not the first acquisition of the Lenta hypermarket chain that the company made in 2021. For example, in May of this year, Lenta announced the acquisition of the Billa retail chain. Lenta’s managers believe that this deal will allow the company to quickly expand its network in Moscow and Moscow region, and the purchase of “mature outlets” with a high density of sales will become the driver of the process.

Lenta received approval of the Federal Antimonopoly Service for the purchase of Billa already in July. According to media reports, Lenta is going to integrate into its network 161 purchased supermarkets, logistics infrastructure and employees of Billa Russia.

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