February 2, 2015 / 7:21 AM / 3 years ago

Finland's Stockmann to sell Seppala fashion chain

HELSINKI, Feb 2 (Reuters) - Finnish fashion and department store group Stockmann on Monday said it has agreed to sell its loss-making fashion chain Seppala to the division’s chief executive Eveliina Melentjeff and her husband.

Stockmann did not disclose the price of the deal but said it would not have a significant effect on its earnings.

Stockmann had recently decided to downsize Seppala chain in Finland and to close all of its shops in Russia, Latvia and Lithuania. Seppala still has 100 stores in Finland and Estonia, and last year the chain had total sales of 93 million euros ($106 million).

“Stockmann’s earnings estimates will rise clearly for 2015 and 2016 without Seppala’s losses and write-down costs,” equity research firm Inderes said on its Twitter account.

Stockmann, which also operates large department stores in Russia, has been hard hit by customers shifting to online shopping, while the weaker Russian rouble and a recession in Finland have exacerbated its problems. ($1 = 0.8850 euros) (Reporting By Jussi Rosendahl. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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