Courage to build

Despite the full-scale war and the risks associated with it, the Ukrainian construction hypermarket chain OLDI continues to invest in new stores and workplaces, having opened a new retail facility in Kyiv.
At the beginning of the full-scale invasion, when the Russian troops came close to Kyiv, one of the rockets launched by the occupiers hit the capital's shopping center and Retroville shopping center. As a result of this shelling, the business center of the complex was partially destroyed, as well as part of the shopping areas. Among the victims was one of the anchor tenants - the construction hypermarket of the French chain Leroy Merlin. Paradoxically, in the end, the French retailer, which suffered significant losses as a result of unprovoked Russian aggression, continued to work in the Russian Federation, but refused to resume work in the subsequently rebuilt Retroville shopping center.
Fortunately, there was already an applicant for the vacated space who showed substantive interest in opening a store in the Retroville shopping center in 2018 - the Ukrainian chain OLDI. As Renata Jakubcheniene, CEO of the Retroville Shopping Center and BC, says, the company tried to agree on the opening of a construction hypermarket for a number of reasons.
"Retroville shopping center is located in a large area of residential development of the developer SG (Stolitsa Group), and the development of the area dictates the need for the presence of a construction hypermarket nearby. The residents of the nearby neighborhoods were very much looking forward to the opening of OLDI, and we made every effort to get this tenant to open as soon as possible. In addition, in this difficult time, we are trying to support Ukrainian business, and we are glad that the Ukrainian operator OLDI has become another anchor tenant of the Retroville shopping center," explains the CEO of the complex.
In turn, the company Retail&Development Advisor (RDA), which accompanied the lease agreement on the part of the tenant, noted that the main goal of both parties was to establish the opening process as quickly as possible for a quick and high-quality launch of the store. All restoration work was carried out with the funds of the Retroville Shopping Center and the premises were handed over to a new tenant this spring. In turn, the OLDI chain performed repair and decoration works in the shortest possible time and already in August opened a new modern hypermarket with an area of almost 5,000 square meters. m.
"Opening a store during the war and providing it with everything necessary - goods, equipment and professional personnel - is very difficult. In addition, everyone clearly understood what difficulties could be faced in the future, not excluding a blackout in the winter period. Therefore, it was important to calculate all the risks and options for their prompt elimination in order to ensure the possibility of making purchases comfortably in any development of events," says RDA commercial real estate manager Hanna Yatsenko.
The fact that it became the first for the OLDI network to be implemented in a shopping and entertainment center adds to the popularity of the project. To meet the requirements of such a location, the company made some adjustments and improvements both to the design and navigation of the store, and to its assortment matrix.
"Taking into account the specifics of the location of the store in the structure of a shopping and entertainment complex, located inside a new large residential area, the emphasis was placed on decorative materials and consumer goods. In turn, the group of general construction materials was somewhat reduced and mostly covers the needs of repairs rather than capital construction. The total assortment of the hypermarket amounted to more than 30,000 SKUs, so we are confident in our ability to satisfy all the needs of our customers," assures the operations director of OLDI Andriy Samoilov.
The Retroville shopping center adds that the opening of the construction supermarket has already had a positive effect on the work of the entire complex. In particular, there is an increase in attendance, flows in this part of the mall have become more lively, and new tenants nearby have accelerated preparations for the opening.
The RDA consulting company is also confident in the good prospects of this project. According to Hanna Yatsenko, the key to success will be the store's walking distance to large-scale residential complexes with 6,500 apartments located nearby.
"It is also important that the residential development developer of the neighborhood continues to work and put new buildings into operation. This means that the number of potential customers of the hypermarket will only grow. In turn, OLDI will be able to offer them not only a wide range of products, but also comfortable shopping, a sufficient number of parking spaces, saving time and prompt delivery of the purchased goods," clarifies Hanna Yatsenko.
With the opening of a new retail facility, the OLDI network grew to five hypermarkets. At the same time, the company is interested in further development and is constantly looking for new promising locations for opening new stores. Thus, the Ukrainian chain of hypermarkets is ready to contribute both to the development of the domestic economy and to the post-war reconstruction of the country.