A difficult March and a terrible April by Leroy Merlin
On February 24, 2022, Russian troops crossed the border into Ukraine and began to penetrate deep into its territory. Thus began the war, which dealt a serious blow to the image of French retail chains.
On March 3, Leroy Merlin’s network in Poland announced that it had suspended cooperation with Russian and Belarusian suppliers and allocated 4.5 million PLN to support Ukraine. – The best thing we can do now is to show solidarity with the victims of this conflict and provide real and material support to all the victims. Therefore, the total income from the sale of all Belarusian or Russian products that are still on store shelves will be completely donated to those in need, both in Poland and Ukraine. For this purpose, Leroy Merlin Polska immediately allocates 4.5 million PLN for material and financial support of Ukrainian citizens. Krzysztof Kordulewski, CEO of Leroy Merlin Polska, said this was only the first phase of relief efforts.
Such statements were made by the Polish branch. The French General Staff took a different approach. On March 11, we learned that the network plans to continue operating in Russia. According to Russian sources, Frenchman Leroy Merlin has not yet expanded his offer in Russia. The decision to stay in Russia was made by Auchan, a network owned by the same owner as Leroy: “Leroy Merlin and his 112 stores in Russia are working normally. We do not plan any changes, “said a spokesman for the network.
According to RIA Novosti, Leroy Merlin “is open to increase supplies and expand the range of products after the departure of some companies.”
Shortly afterwards, a wave of criticism and anger spread over Leroy Merlin and Auchan, who boycotted the chain and began demonstrations in front of stores.
The Polish headquarters issued a statement on March 22 stating: “We are shocked by the devastation of Ukrainian cities and the human tragedy as a result of this war. The image of the Leroy Merlin store that was bombed yesterday. We do not have strong enough words to condemn all the atrocities committed since 24. At the same time, we have great sympathy for all the victims of this war. (. ..) “Our hearts, as well as the whole of Polish society, are on the side of the victims of this war. We will help them, increase our commitment and live in the hope that this war will end as soon as possible.”
On March 28, the network wrote on its website: French parent company Leroy Merlin announced on March 24 that it had decided to suspend the brand’s future investments in the Russian Federation.
Numerous demonstrations, change of labels in stores, government ideas for additional taxes and an interesting parliamentary reference
Over the weekend of April 9-10, activists who launched a campaign under the slogan Leroy Merlin National Boycott staged up to 15 demonstrations in front of a chain of stores that did not leave the Russian market. Leroy was targeted by Merlin and Auchan. Activists said artist Bartek Kielbowicz had created “alternative labels” for Leroy Merlin’s products. Published files for self-printing. That’s why stickers and labels, including “trash cans” instead of “trash cans” began to appear on the Internet.
Even the mayor’s office of Gdynia ended its cooperation with the Leroy Merlin store in Carvinia and joined the boycott of the French network. This is a reaction to the policy of the French company.
Activists will not demonstrate in front of shops on Easter weekends. However, they announced that they would try to get other forms of protest – interesting surprises for the leadership of the network in Poland.
The organizers of the demonstration are calling on their supporters to hold a post-Christmas protest on Saturday, April 23, at 14:00.
– We want to synchronize our actions so that the ADEO group receives a clear signal – this protest will only gain strength. If you want our picket to come to your city, take the first step. Contact us and we will help you organize and register the event in front of the Leroy or Auchan store. If you do this early enough, others will join you. We are confident that after the holidays, according to activists, the largest pickets, demonstrations and events will be held so far.
Recall that in late March, Piotr Müller announced that Poland would try to impose additional taxes on companies that do not cease operations in Russia.
“We are proposing additional taxes for businesses that continue to operate in Russia and at the same time feed Putin’s war machine, especially international corporations,” a government spokesman told a news conference. According to him, the activities of companies located in Poland in the territory of the Russian Federation, which have no consequences, can not be agreed.
In April, we reported that MP Hanna Gill-Piątek believed that the government should allow companies such as Auchan or Leroy Merlin to terminate contracts with Polish contractors immediately and without result.
“On March 18 this year, you reported on measures to deepen the Polish economy. Reducing Russia’s influence in Poland in the face of Vladimir Putin’s brutal aggression against Ukraine and threats to the free world. The only possible way is the economy,” he wrote in a statement on March 21. It would be desirable to put pressure on Russia to stop the war, but not only to act against Russian capital, but also to put pressure on international corporations not to continue operating in the aggressor’s country. or people who have started boycotting retail chains such as Leroy Merlin, who have decided to stay in the Russian market and continue doing business in the aggressor’s country. or say suppliers il. (…). Hanna Beata Gill-Piątek asked the Prime Minister: Does the government intend to allow Polish contractors, Russian companies and international corporations and capital groups that do not want to leave Russia to terminate their contracts immediately and without the consequences provided by law? the contract itself for the violating party?
Plans for new Leroy Merlin stores
On January 12 this year. The chain opened its 75th store around Kołobrzeg in Poland. This is the second Leroy Merlin market after Andrychów, opened to customers in January 2022, and is also the first full-scale facility in the space.
A new Leroy Merlin Głogów store is scheduled to open in Lower Silesia in mid-2022. In the second half of 2022, a new chain store will open at 19 Karola Bunscha in Krakow. This will be the fourth point on the map of the Krakow agglomeration. A new store will open in Warsaw in the third quarter of 2022. The facility, with a retail area of about 15,000 m2, will be built at the former Tesco facility at 121 Połczyńska. It will be the eleventh Leroy Merlin store in the Warsaw agglomeration.
In the last five years alone, the company has opened 27 new stores with renovation and interior design solutions, creating 3,600 new jobs.
Leroy Merlin is the third world player in the DIY industry. The Mulliez family started a business.
Adeo Group, among others, is the leader in Europe and the world’s third largest player in the DIY and DIY industry, with a turnover of 26 billion euros in 2020, including the Leroy Merlin chain. ADEO offers solutions through a network of 900 integrated stores, sales platforms and platform partnerships. It is the only player in the market for houses and apartments in 20 countries and with such a wide international coverage. What other brands does the group have besides Leroy Merlin? Bricoman, Zôdio, Weldom, Kbane, Alice délice, Bricocenter, Décoclico.fr, Lightonline and Quotatis.
The company dates back to 1920 – in 1921, Adolf Leroy opened the first store in France to use the “surplus” left by the Allies after the war and play the role of surplus – it resold military equipment to civilians. The name of the store was Stock Americain. You can buy equipment left by the American army after the war. Two years later, he handed over the company to his son, Adolf Jr. He is married to Rose Merlin. The new name of the store is derived from the name of this couple. In 1979, the Mulliez family acquired 50 percent of the property. He acquired shares in 30 Leroy Merlin stores and later in 50 more stores and started a business on a global scale. In the mid-1990s, Leroy Merlin stores went to Poland and Russia.
The first store of the chain in Poland was opened in 1996 in Piaszczno, near Warsaw. The second store opened two years later in Warsaw, Białęka, and the third in Gdansk in early 1999. In the following years, several stores were opened each year in almost all voivodships.
Leroy Merlin Polska’s earnings for 2020 are PLN 345,985,000. The profit for 2019 is 238,417,000 PLN, which means an increase of 107,568,000 PLN.