Russia’s largest retailer looks for edge with launch of Retail Research Centre

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 15th August 2008

X5 Retail Group N.V., Russia’s largest retailer in terms of sales, and the System Analysis Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (“ISA RAN”), an acknowledged leader in traditional and interdisciplinary research, have signed an innovative agreement on scientific research and cooperation.

The agreement is a first step on the way to setting up a research institute which will focus on modern retailing – the Retail Research Centre of ISA RAN. The Centre will concentrate on studying issues related to the establishment, operation and development of retail chains based on international and Russian experience.

The Director of the Centre, PhD in Economics and X5 Retail Group CEO Lev Khasis believes the centre will provide effective options to improve retail operations. “Today, when the Russian retail market is so young and fast-growing, we clearly feel the lack of a research base to adequately assess new issues and propose efficient solutions,” Khasis said. “Our Centre will employ both leading Russian researchers and X5 professionals with considerable industry expertise. Such cooperation will enable us to look at retail chains and the industry as a whole from different angles. We will analyse international and Russian experience with focus on regulation, pricing, brand creation and promotion, IT systems in retail and many other issues that play an important role in its future development.”

The Director of ISA RAN Jury Popkov added that the research will provide great benefit to the retail sector by addressing a number of different needs. “Creation of the Retail Research Centre by ISA RAN, which is well known for its interdisciplinary research, represents our reply to the actual sector’s needs,” he claimed. “Our scientific
research is highly recognized from the fundamental stand point, while joint efforts with industry experts will enable us to form modern retail concepts and ideas that can be efficiently employed in practice”.

X5 will finance the Centre’s research projects, assist ISA RAN in staffing, suggest topics for analysis and provide research materials, with ISA RAN responsible for setting up the Centre, staffing it with researchers and managing the Centre.