Czechs swoop on Russian retailer

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The Independent Online

PPF, the Czech Republic's biggest financial services conglomerate, has clinched a deal to gain majority control of Eldorado, Russia's largest electrical retailer.

Tomas Spurny, chief executive, said in Moscow last week that PPF had agreed a $500m (£330m) loan to Eldorado which, when converted, would give it majority control. Eldorado, described as the Dixons of Russia, has 485 stores across the country and $4bn of revenues. "There is a great opportunity for us to help Eldorado grow," Mr Spurny said. "I would like to double the number of stores to 1,000.

"By offering our consumer finance products in the Eldorado stores, we can see even greater growth for our credit business."

PPF's Home Credit & Finance Bank is now the second-largest financial group in Russia, offering credit to around five million people through 200 branches plus shops and post offices.