Salem Radio Network News Friday, June 2, 2023


Russian firm says it closes deal to buy IKEA factory

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian company Invest Plus on Monday said it had completed a deal to buy IKEA’s largest Russian production asset, its Novgorod factory, more than a year after the Swedish furniture giant first paused its activities in Russia over the Ukraine conflict.

IKEA halted all retail and production operations in Russia soon after Moscow sent troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24, along with scores of other Western companies. IKEA briefly resumed online sales last summer.

“The process of concluding the deal was not easy and quite lengthy,” Invest Plus owner Vadim Osipov said in a statement, thanking all parties involved – IKEA, Russian and Swedish regulators, and Russia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Brand owner Inter IKEA Group could not be reached for comment before working hours. It has previously said it was selling its four factories in Russia, in Tikhvin, Novgorod and Vyatka.

Invest Plus is a special purpose vehicle (SPV), beneficially owned by Osipov, who is CEO and co-owner of Slotex, a leading domestic producer of laminates and kitchen worktops.

Sales by Western companies have been complicated as deals involving firms from so-called unfriendly countries – those that imposed sanctions against Russia – need approval from a government commission.

Russia’s industry ministry in February said that Slotex and lumber producer Luzales would buy the IKEA plants.

Osipov said the backbone of the factory’s workforce had been retained.

Invest Plus said it would guarantee to maintain the number of employees for at least a year and that full production would resume in the next two to three months.

“Our goal is to return the highly popular and quality production of the Novgorod factory to Russia’s furniture market as quickly as possible,” Osipov said.

(Reporting by Alexander Marrow; editing by Jason Neely)


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