X5 to Open Premium Supermarkets as Russian Food Spending Climbs

01 Apr 2008 • by Natalie Aster

X5 Retail Group NV, Russia's largest food retailer, will open a chain of premium supermarkets under the Green Perekrestok name as rising incomes give shoppers more money to spend on higher-priced goods, reported The Bloomberg.

The first outlet will open in July in the southern Russian city of Rostov, Moscow-based X5 said today in a Regulatory News Service statement. The stores will offer luxury items as well as everyday staples and advice on choosing gourmet goods such as cheese and meat, the grocer said.

Shoppers have larger budgets in Russia, the world's biggest crude-oil and natural-gas exporter, as surging energy prices drive a 10th straight year of economic expansion. Increased spending power has enabled more Russians to buy food at stores such as X5's Pyaterochka chain, turning away from open markets and independent grocers.

``There are thousands of consumers in the premium-goods segment in large cities,'' Antonio Melo, X5's chief operating officer, said in the statement. ``We are launching Green Perekrestok with these customers in mind.''