Spar International has signed two licensing deals in Russia and is in “advanced discussions” with a number of others, it has said.

The grocer revealed today (11 October) that it has granted two licenses in the country: one to the Anix chain of stores for the Altay Republic; and a second with the Semya Group for the Kaliningrad region.

The move brings the current number of partners Spar has signed with in Russia over the last 12 months to five, following the completion of agreements with partners in Tyumen, Irkutsk and Tomsk.

Spar International has had a presence in Russia since 2001 and now has 13 partners and 300 stores across three formats: Express, hypermarket and convenience.

The retailer said it is in “advanced discussions” with a number of other parties in relation to the awarding of additional Spar licenses in Russia, while a separate license for the Moscow region, which has become available following a change in the ownership of an existing partner, is also “attracting interest”, it said.

“Russia has and continues to be a great success for Spar,” said Dr. Gordon Campbell, MD of Spar International. “Existing and new partners are attracted by our collaboration in purchasing, exchange of knowledge around best practice and our entrepreneurial approach to doing business. We look forward to further growth in our overall store numbers and retail sales in 2014 and to welcoming more new partners to our growing network.”

Spar retail sales in Russia increased by 21% to EUR1.13bn in 2012. At the end of July, retail sales were up a further 18% in local currency terms. It is one of the top performing markets globally for Spar.