Kopeika Secures $143Mln Sberbank Loan

Discount retailer Kopeika has secured a 4 billion ruble ($142.9 million) loan from Sberbank, Kopeika's president Sergei Solodov said Tuesday.

Solodov said Sberbank approved the loan, which is secured by the retailer's property, last week, adding that Kopeika was also awaiting a decision by another state-controlled lender, VTB, on a 1.5 billion ruble loan.

The company plans to use the funds primarily to meet put options on 4 billion rubles of bonds in February and August of next year, Solodov said.

It also intends to withdraw funds from its operational cash flow to repay debt, he said.

"This year we expect sales growth of 40 percent in ruble terms, to 49 billion rubles. Our forecast for revenue growth next year is 30 percent in rubles, and for [earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortization] about $150 million," Solodov said.

"All the money we earn, we will channel to debt repayment."

In October, Kopeika said it had scaled down expansion plans as it seeks to strengthen its liquidity profile in the financial crisis and acquire rival chains.

Unlisted Kopeika is wholly owned by businessman Nikolai Tsvetkov, founder of financial corporation UralSib.