US direct seller taps in to Russia

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Russia

Amway has broken into the Russian market in a bid to tap into huge
consumer growth. The direct sales company is aiming to establish a
sales force for its range of cosmetics and household products from
centres based in Moscow and Nizhni Novgorod, with a view to
expanding its regional cover in the future.

The move means that the company, which is part of the Alticor group, has now broken into its 57th market. The company is already well established in Central and Eastern Europe, with operations in Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia, Romania and Ukraine, helping to contribute to a global turnover of $6.2 billion in 2004.

Steve Van Andel, chairman of Alticor said: "Introduction of the Amway business opportunity in Russia marks another significant step as we continue to promote individual opportunity and the market economy around the globe. "

Doug DeVos, president of Alticor, said that the move into the Russian market would help many Russian citizens to establish a financial future for themselves as they built their own independent businesses selling Amway's​ products.

Devos added that Russia's entrepreneurial spirit, combined with value-minded and sophisticated consumers, would offer the Amway business "great potential."

With the company's cosmetics and personal care lines still proving to be its mainstay, its Artistry line of cosmetics is expected to be one of its most successful lines in Russia. The company is also planning on pushing multi-purpose home care products, with a view to gradually introducing additional lines as the business develops.

Claus Joensson, Amway Russia Country Manager, said: "We intend to share with the Russian people the opportunity to own and operate their own businesses at a low start-up cost. We will help Russians develop product knowledge, and business management skills."

Amway Russia's main offices are located in Moscow. The company's sales force in Russia will be serviced by three product selection centers in Moscow and the other in Nizhni Novgorod. From this position the company says it plans to expand to other cities and regions of the Russian Federation in the near future, in line with the increasing tendency for companies to expand outside the main metropolitan areas in the country.

"The Russian people have embraced free enterprise and direct selling with great enthusiasm,"​ said Joensson. "We are honored to be able to bring our brand to this dynamic and exciting new market. Russians realize that by joining Amway, they will be rewarded with a business of their own, built on their own, independent terms."

The company is hoping that the Russian market will go the same way as the China market has in recent years. Last year sales from the company's China division doubled to reach $2 billion, particularly driven by a strong performance from the company's health and beauty lines.

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