16 Aug 2022 16:25

Chocolate producer Lindt decides to exit Russian market

MOSCOW. Aug 17 (Interfax) - Swiss chocolate producer Lindt and Sprungli Group has decided to leave the Russian market, the company said in a statement.

"We will support our employees in Russia and act in accordance with local regulations," the statement reads.

In early March, Lindt announced a decision to temporarily close its stores in Russia and suspend the supply of its products to the Russian market.

Lindt & Sprungli AG is a leading producer of premium chocolate. The company makes its products at 11 factories in Europe and the USA.

Lindt had nine stores in Russia, according to the company's local website. The products are also sold in the company's own online store and in retail chains.

According to the SPARK-Interfax system, Lindt und Sprüngli (Russia) LLC saw revenue grow 16% to 3.1 billion rubles in 2021, and posted a net profit of 99.6 million rubles, compared to a net loss of 61 million rubles in 2020.

Russia's Agriculture Ministry said that Lindt & Sprungli products have a negligible share of the Russian market in the high price segment.

"Moreover, many Russian companies produce premium chocolate that is on par with foreign brands in terms of taste and quality. Therefore, the departure of an individual foreign producer will not lead to a decrease in assortment and will give Russian brands an opportunity to fill the vacated niche," the ministry said in a statement.

The ministry also said that Russian confectionery factories have sufficient production capacity to fully meet domestic demand, including for chocolate. Furthermore, in recent years Russia "has become one of the world leaders in this segment and a significant player on export markets," the ministry said.