Rimi closing Lithuanian stores

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Carl Collen

BY CARL COLLEN

Rimi closing Lithuanian stores

First-half decline in sales across Baltic countries leads to probable closing of 24 unprofitable Lithuanian stores

Rimi closing Lithuanian stores

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Rimi has revealed that it is to end operations at 24 unprofitable stores in Lithuania following a fall in sales during the first six months of 2010, a trend seen across much of the Baltic states.

The move means that Rimi loses over a third of its store portfolio in the country, although the group's parent company, Swedish retailer Ahold ICA, noted that the decline in sales slowed down through the second quarter of the year, Planet Retail reported.

ICA reported on a drop in net sales of 1.6 per cent for the first half of the year across its Scandinavian store range to €4.8bn, with operating income coming in at €180m (up 40 per cent) and net income amounting to €5.8m, a drop of 88 per cent on 2009.

President and chief executive officer Kenneth Bengtsson noted that Sweden, Norway and the Baltics had seen falling sales due to a "generally weak food retail market and an increasingly promotional competitive environment".

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