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Where is the investor going?
19.06.2012 1532

Where is the investor going?

The international consulting company AT Kearney has published its annual ranking of the most promising retail investment markets (The 2012 Global Retail Development Index, GRDI). The rating includes 30 developing countries, and for the second year in a row, Brazil is becoming the most attractive for retailers. “Several factors speak in favor of this country as the main direction for retail chains: a growing economy on the shoulders of the middle class, high levels of consumption, a large urban population and a decreased political and financial risk,” AT Kearney reports.

In addition to Brazil, the top five leaders in the ranking included two more Latin American countries - Chile (second place, as in 2011) and Uruguay (fourth, in 2011 - third). The third number was China, which occupied only sixth place in 2011. Top-5 closes India, which last year was in fourth place.

The markets of the BRIC countries are still very important for the largest global networks, but at the same time there are many other undeveloped markets that provide new growth opportunities. Georgia (6 place), Oman (8), Mongolia (9) and Azerbaijan (17) have become much more attractive for global players, and especially for manufacturers of specialized and luxury goods. These markets, albeit small in terms of sales, have strong fundamental indicators in which retailers interested in concentrated wealth and striving to be the first in fast-growing markets are interested.

Russia took 26 place in the ranking of the most promising countries for investment in retail trade. In 2011, it was on the 14 line. However, this should not be regarded as a loss of attractiveness of the Russian market as a whole for foreign retailers, said Per Hong, one of the co-authors of the study, managing partner of the Moscow office of ATKearney.

“Russian retail has already recovered from the recession of 2009, indicators have returned to the pre-crisis level, and growth continues. The growth prospects are quite favorable, and at the same time, when compiling this rating, we take into account not only the attractiveness of the market, but also country risk, market saturation and the ability to delay retailers from entering it. The difficulties of doing business in Russia are well known, there is a lack of suitable real estate (and it is expensive), the market is very fragmented. The rating indicates that the Russian market is definitely no longer a market for emerging opportunities, and GRDI is considering just such markets. Rather, it is entering the phase when it will be necessary to compare it with more developed countries in Europe, ”says Per Hong.

The revenue of leading Russian retailers such as the Х5 Retail Group, Okay and Magnit has been growing at the level of 30% or more in recent years, with the expansion of modern retail trade. If buyers in Western Europe tightened their belts during the crisis, this did not happen in Russia. The growth of incomes of the population played a role, as well as the fact that Russians save only a small part of their income and gravitate towards luxury and premium brands. This significantly increases the attractiveness of the market for international retailers seeking to compensate for the short-term decline in demand in developed countries.

Trends vary slightly depending on the channel. In 2011, Russia opened 100 new hypermarkets. Foreign retailers have long been present in the country and are aggressively expanding. Auchan and Metro today took the third and fourth place in Russia in terms of sales among food retailers, and are actively launching new formats in response to changing consumer demands. Auchan will open six hypermarkets in 2012 and expand its Atak supermarket chain from 50 to 200 to 2015. Metro plans to open 15 stores this year, and the group's Real chain has recently launched small-box stores.

“The retail industry in Russia is still highly fragmented - the five leaders occupy less than 15% of the market, which leads to a persistent discussion about when and how to expect the appearance of foreign retailers still not present in Russia, such as Wal- mart. The question, in my opinion, is rather not whether they will come, but when it will happen, ”Per Hong believes.

The Russian luxury market is booming after being squeezed during a recession. Most international luxury brands are already present in Russia, and many of them have refused intermediaries in the past five years and have chosen to act independently. Prada recently opened its first store in Moscow, and by the end of the year, new Ralph Lauren, Chanel and Cartier boutiques will also appear in the city.

Another important feature of the Russian market is a significant increase in e-commerce. Today in Russia, the volume of the online trading market has already exceeded $ 9 billion per year. It is reported by retailer.ru.

The international consulting company AT Kearney has published its annual ranking of the most promising retail investment markets (The 2012 Global Retail Development Index, ...
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