Russian retailers look towards Cyber Monday to counter crisis

Retailers in Russia, including online store Ulmart and consumer-electronics chains M.video and Metro AG’s Media Markt, will hold a third Cyber Monday event next week with the stakes higher than in the past two years as the economy heads into recession.

At least 50 companies will participate, offering online discounts and promotions, shares Russian e-commerce lobby group Akit, which has been organising the event since 2013. Other retailers participating in the event include children’s goods chain OAO Detsky Mir and Rocket Internet AG’s (RKET) online fashion vendor Lamoda.

Russia holds Cyber Monday later than the US and UK because Russians shop actively until the very end of December, then we have a 10-day holiday, and the end of January is the time to give a boost to sales, believes Akit spokeswoman Uliana Vlasenko.

This year, Cyber Monday may be more important for retailers trying to attract trade. Many Russians brought forward purchases to the end of 2014 as they rushed to convert funds into goods before a weakening ruble further inflated prices.

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