Political pressure caused by the Ukraine invasion has led to a Russian supermarket chain closing its Preston store.Advertisement
On Thursday 3 March, budget supermarket Mere announced it is also halting any further openings as the ongoing conflict has made it difficult to conduct business in the UK – according to reports in The Grocer.
On the same day, management told Preston Mere staff that the Ribbleton-based supermarket would close in two weeks despite only opening its doors last summer.
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Founded in 2009, Mere is known as the ‘Russian version of Lidl’ and claims to be 30 per cent cheaper than Aldi and Lidl, with around 3,000 stores worldwide utilising a ‘low-cost operating model’ and small staff numbers.
The retailer has also found it problematic to trade in the UK after struggling to find suppliers that provided products on a sale-only payment agreement.
As a result, Mere could not secure sufficient stock and lacked food lines, although the Preston branch had seen some improvements last week, including a frozen food line.
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The Svetofor-based retailer had plans to establish a UK estate comprising 300 branches over the next eight to ten years, but the firm has cancelled its UK expansion indefinitely.
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