Mikhail Prokhorov changed his mind

The billionaire sold 15.6% of the Obuv Rossii company, the cost of such a package on the exchange is nearly 1 billion rubles.
Businessman Mikhail Prokhorov left the capital of one of the leaders of the Russian shoe retail sector - Obuv Rossii GC: on June 26 his Karyo Holdings ceased to be a shareholder in the management company of the group, PJSC “OR”, follows from the message of the latter. Prokhorov’s representative confirmed the deal: “It was planned in advance, he [the businessman] came out with a good profit.” He did not disclose any other details, including the name of the buyer.

Prokhorov became the owner of 25% of Obuv Rossii in the first quarter of 2017. Later, its share fell to 15.6% and remained so until recently. On Wednesday, at the close of the Moscow Exchange, this package cost almost 1 billion rubles. The main owner (50%) and general director of Obuv Rossii Anton Titov declined to comment. The group’s press service did not respond to the Vedomosti request.

Prokhorov is one of the wealthiest businessmen in the country: in 2019 he took the 12th place among the richest Russians according to Forbes magazine with a fortune of $ 9.8 billion. Since 2016, the billionaire has sold Russian assets: so, he broke up with UC Rusal, one of the world's largest aluminum producers, with a package of mineral fertilizer producer Uralkali, OPIN developer, RBC media holding, shares of the National Basketball Association's Brooklyn Nets club.

Obuv Rossii is one of the largest shoe sellers in Russia. The company was founded in 2003 in Novosibirsk, its production facilities are located there. The company develops several shoe networks, including those under the sign Westfalika, Pedestrian, Rossita, Lisette and Emilia Estra. At the end of 2018, the group united 727 stores, including 161 franchising, in 232 cities of Russia.

In October 2017, Obuv Rossii held an IPO on the Moscow Stock Exchange, during which it raised about 6 billion rubles. Companies needed money from investors to increase their retail network, develop distribution, and partially pay off their debts. For 2018, the revenue of Obuv Rossii under IFRS increased by 6.9% to 11.5 billion rubles, net profit - by 1.6% to 1.3 billion rubles. In October 2018, the board of directors of the group approved the buyback program for up to 900 million rubles. The buyout will be made at a price not higher than the price for an IPO - 140 rubles. per share, the program is valid until December 31, 2019

Now investors have little interest in Russian manufacturers and sellers of clothes and shoes - traditional retail is in a difficult situation, says senior analyst at Gazprombank Marat Ibragimov: more and more purchases are made on the Internet amid a general decline in consumer activity. “Investments in traditional retail have become risky,” he sums up.
The shoe market in Russia is going through difficult times: 35.4% of Russian families lack the funds to buy suitable shoes for each family member for the season - these are Rosstat data on the financial situation of families in Russia in 2018. Last year, the Russian shoe market fell in pieces by 5.5% to 329 million pairs, in money - by 3.2% to 1.37 billion rubles, according to the Obuv Rossii annual report, to the data of the Discovery Research Group. Among the reasons are a drop in imports (by 9.7%), a decrease in consumer activity and a decrease in real incomes of the population. Difficulties in the market are also associated with his whitewashing - from July 1, 2019, mandatory labeling of shoes starts, recalls Sergey Sarkisov, vice president of Novard GC, managing Econika stores. “This process is not easy, entering online cash desks and labeling is necessary, but it will take 2–3 years to stabilize the market,” he explains.