Russian grocery retailer Lenta’s troubles have continued as a board meeting set to ratify the appointment of an interim new CEO did not go ahead.
The meeting was supposed to be held yesterday (16 August) but was cancelled on Saturday by private-equity firm and Lenta shareholder TPG as its representatives did not expect all participants to show up.
According to TPG and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) sources, the meeting was called to appoint Sergei Yuschenko as CEO of the company, following a meeting in May where attempts to put him into the role led to TPG’s representatives walking out of the meeting.
The chairman of Lenta’s board, Dimitry Kostygin, told just-food: “I heard rumours that there would be a board meeting from the media but nothing was confirmed.”
He added that he would be happy to meet “almost any time” in St Petersburg, but that “people don’t seem to want to travel to St Petersburg.”
“We are very disappointed that the meeting failed to take place,” said an EBRD representative, which owns 11%. “The company is being run in a way that circumvents the board and it cannot perform its functions.”
The move follows several months of infighting among the retailer’s board following the decision of 40% stakeholder, Svoboda, to dismiss CEO Jan Dunning and replace him with board member Sergei Yuschenko in May.