RDIF and METRO announce a joint investment in the development of FASOL franchise partners

Press release, 06.06.2019

Saint-Petersburg, June 6, 2019 - The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, and the leading German wholesale-retailer METRO Cash & Carry announce the signing of an agreement aimed at investment support to the partners of the FASOL franchise program. The funds up to RUB650mn may be invested in providing financing to independent entrepreneurs for opening small and medium retail businesses.

The cooperation is aimed at creating a mechanism for financing and supporting small and medium-sized businesses in the retail sector by attracting third-party investments. The project will allow entrepreneurs to get attractive terms for opening a retail outlet, a reliable partnership and preserve the independence of business ownership, with support from the METRO franchise.

It is expected that the investments of RDIF and METRO will help independent entrepreneurs to open several hundred new stores throughout the country. 

Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), said:

“The development of small and medium-sized businesses, outlined by the relevant national project of the Russian Federation, is one of the priority areas for RDIF investment. Joint investments with METRO will create over 1.5 thousand jobs, encourage the development of small trade formats, stimulate competition and individual entrepreneurship while expanding the choice for consumers”.

Alexey Grigoriev, Public Policy Director METRO Russia, said:

“The independent entrepreneurship support program FASOL was created in order to provide a reliable tool of support and growth to all who want to engage in trade, while retaining freedom of own decisions and individuality. And we observe high interest with regard to this program. Now, thanks to joint efforts of METRO and RDIF, small and medium-sized businesses will receive even more opportunities for successful development in the current economic reality”.  

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Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is Russia's sovereign wealth fund established in 2011 to make equity co-investments, primarily in Russia, alongside reputable international financial and strategic investors. RDIF acts as a catalyst for direct investment in the Russian economy. RDIF’s management company is based in Moscow. Currently, RDIF has experience of the successful joint implementation of more than 70 projects with foreign partners totaling more than RUB 1.5tn and covering 95% of the regions of the Russian Federation. RDIF portfolio companies employ more than 800,000 people and generate revenues which equate to more than 6% of Russia’s GDP. RDIF established joint strategic partnerships with leading international co-investors from more than 15 countries that total more than $40bn. Further information can be found at www.rdif.ru

METRO is a leading international specialist in wholesale and food retail. The company operates in 35 countries and employs more than 150,000 people worldwide. The company provides custom solutions to meet the regional and international needs of its wholesale and retail customers. With its sales brands METRO/MAKRO Cash & Carry and Real as well as delivery services and digitalisation initiatives METRO sets the standards for tomorrow: for customer focus, digital solutions and sustainable business models. Further information can be found at www.metro-cc.ru.

The FASOL franchise is a support program of the international company METRO for small and medium-sized businesses. It helps entrepreneurs to open and efficiently run a grocery store from scratch or to convert existing stores to competitive retail businesses. In Russia, the franchise was launched as a attest-run in 2014, and from 2017, it started work in a fully operational mode. FASOL provides friendly entry conditions, a large choice of formats and an individual approach to every partner. Having exceeded 1360 stores, the project is developing in all cities of METRO presence in Russia.

For additional information contact:

Arseniy Palagin                                     Maria Shiryaevskaya / Andrew Leach
Russian Direct Investment Fund              Hudson Sandler
Press Secretary                                        Tel: +44 (0) 20 7796 4133 
Tel: +7 495 644 34 14, ext. 2395
Mobile: +7 916 110 31 41
E-mail: arseniy.palagin@rdif.ru