While working in Russia, the key players of food retail in the first month of the regime of self-isolation because of the pandemic, its revenue grew, “Auchan”, on the contrary, reduced it by a quarter. At the same time in the domestic market network in France, the loss amounted to only 3%. The former lawyer of the Russian representative office of a retail company connects the negative end of last month, with the opaque work of the Moscow office. There is, in General, deny the charges. But recognize the fact of reducing traffic in the Russian shops and the “possibility of corruption”.The revenue of “Auchan” company in Russia in April fell year-on-year by 25% in may — pre 17%, writes the French Les Echos, citing internal company documents. Since the beginning of the pandemic in shops of a network also dropped and traffic to 25-66%, says the publication. Kommersant managed to obtain copies of the documents, their authenticity was confirmed by a source familiar with the situation in the Russian “Auchan”. In the materials specified that, from 1 to 19 may, the traffic of shops depending on the city and the format fell 2.4 is 37.5%.In France and Spain sales in shops “Ashan” decreased by only an average of 3%, the “Kommersant” Alexey Zharkov, in 2018-2019 who worked as a lawyer on anti-corruption, auditor and project Director of the Russian “Auchan”. Of high sales in the first quarter, reported Lenta, O’key and Magnit, said the General Director “Infoline-Analytics” Mikhail Burmistrov. However, he says, by the end of may, most players comparable sales show a negative trend, “Coswell” already reported a decrease of 20% of sales offline.Auchan Holding with headquarters in Roubaix belongs to the French family Association Mule and owns about 20 brands and more than 70 companies in various industries. In addition to its namesake network, the company owns, particularly chains such as Decathlon, Leroy Merlin, Green Light, Kiabi, Mondial Carpet. According to the website of the holding, in 2018 the total revenues exceeded €23.1 billion including VAT.Les Echos notes that “Auchan” in Russia “was unable to free himself from the once successful model hypermarkets”. A large number of shops “Auchan” as a part targetrow, lost almost all traffic during the pandemic negatively affects development network, agrees Mr. Burmistrov. Besides, he continues, a new crisis has shown that the company was not able to significantly increase online sales in Russia (for example, X5 Retail Group reported on the growth of online trading in April, five times).Problems French network in Russia emerged even before the pandemic, the revenue has declined the last four years. In addition, in March this year, Les Echos reported that the Russian “Gazprom” have lost up to 3% of turnover, or €80-100 million per year due to corrupt schemes of management. Information revealed the same Alexey Zharkov. He claimed that employees of the Russian branch of the network demanded a fee from p��suppliers to stand on the shelf network, arranged leaks, allowing contractors of the retailer to gain advantage in the tendering process. The rebates supposedly exceeded 5%, which is prohibited by the Federal law “On trade”. In Russian “Auchan” argued that the information is untrue.Alexey Zharkov believes that “opaque work” became one of the key problems of “Auchan” in Russia and during a pandemic. The lawyer recalls the capitalization of the Russian “Auchan” in the end of 2019, €200 million and believes that the preservation of business will require new injections. He also admits that a parent company can solve the problem radically: “it is possible the Italian scenario, when the band for a song broke up with my network in 2019, giving it to the group Conad”. Alexey Zharkov stresses that networks in Russia have financial obligations to Gazprombank and VTB.However, a company representative Natalia Rychkova acknowledged the decrease in traffic of stores in April and may “due to restrictions imposed by government agencies”. In the Moscow office Auchan deny the possibility of leaving Russia, stressing that hold 21% in the segment of hypermarkets and 7% in the segment of supermarkets. In November 2019 the Russian “Gazprom” was headed by Johannes Tholey, designed to bring the company from prolonged crisis. In April, he launched a partnership agreement with the courier iGoods and “Spermaceti”. This partnership, says Natalia Rychkova, allowed the retailer to double sales in the segment of e-commerce during a pandemic.At the same time in the “Auchan” admit that the company “might encounter in Russia, with corrupt actions.” However, clarified there, yet “not enough evidence which would allow to prosecute individuals”.Nikita Sharenkov