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Nike to consider exiting Russia after not renewing main franchise deal

The news comes after the sports franchise didn’t renew its agreement with Inventive Retail Group, which owns Russia’s largest chain of retail stores

Nike is reportedly considering exiting Russia permanently after not renewing its franchise agreement.

According to reports first revealed by The Vedomosti Daily, the news comes after the sports giant didn’t renew its agreement with Inventive Retail Group, which owns Russia’s largest chain of retail stores.

IRG president Tikhon Smykov reportedly told employees that the company’s franchise agreement would not be renewed, in a letter seen by the Vedomosti newspaper.

Nike had suspended operations in Russia on March 3 after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. On Monday, Starbucks confirmed it was pulling out of the country.

IRG PR director, Ludmila Semushkina, said: “In the current realities we cannot continue to support the operation of mono-branded Nike stores and will be forced to close them.”

Nike had recently has reported its revenues rose 5% year-on-year from $10.35bn (£7.83bn) to $10.9bn (£8.24bn) in the third quarter (Q3) of FY22, following the “steady normalisation” of traffic in owned physical retail, with Nike owned stores up 14%.

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