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Kesko says to sell or close all its Russian sports goods stores

today Feb 3, 2016
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Finland's second-biggest retailer Kesko is planning to withdraw from its loss-making sports goods business in Russia, it said on Wednesday.

Kesko's sports goods chain Intersport saw sales at its 18 stores in Russia drop 17 percent last year to about 12 million euros ($13 million).

"We are looking for a buyer for this business, or then we will close it down this year," a Kesko spokesman said.

Kesko said in its earnings report it booked around 17 million euros in impairments in the fourth quarter relating to restructuring of the Intersport stores in Russia.

It said it would stick to its grocery and hardware retail businesses in Russia.

Kesko's quarterly operating profit fell slightly, in line with expectations, amid tough price competition in Finland's grocery industry.

It's 2015 total sales fell to about 8.7 billion euros from 9.1 billion euros a year earlier.

$1 = 0.9062 euros

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