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Pure London owner Hyve Group to sell Russian business

By Huw Hughes

6 Apr 2022

Fairs

Image: Pure London

British trade fair operator Hyve said Wednesday it plans to sell its Russian business following the country’s invasion of Ukraine.

The group, which runs fairs Pure London, Moda and Scoop, said it has entered into a conditional agreement with Rise Expo Limited to sell the business for a maximum cash consideration of 72 million pounds, wholly structured as earn-out consideration payable over a ten-year period.

It comes after Hyve announced in March it would be exiting the Russian market.

Hyve CEO Mark Shashoua said in a statement: “While we have not taken the decision to exit the Russian market lightly, the sale of the Russian business does accelerate our strategy to focus on omnichannel products in developed geographies.

“Russia has been a legacy of the company since 1991 and this exit creates value for shareholders and some security for the teams who have served the company so well for over 30 years.”

The news came on the same day Hyve revealed an improvement in half-year revenue as global events returned following the end of Covid restrictions.

In the six months ended March 31, Hyve delivered revenue of approximately 58 million pounds, up from 5 million pounds a year earlier when it was heavily impacted by the pandemic, and excluding Russian revenues of around 17 million pounds.

Hyve said the improvement in revenue comes amid pent-up demand for in-person events after the group was forced to cancel its shows over the past two years due to Covid.

Events schedule near to pre-pandemic levels

Shashoua said: “I am delighted to see Hyve return to a schedule of events comparable to pre-pandemic levels and I am highly encouraged by the pent-up demand we continue to see among our customer communities.”

He added that the Shoptalk event showed a particularly strong recovery, “significantly” outperforming the 2019 edition.

Hyve ran a total of 21 in-person events during the first half of the year, compared to seven in the first half of the prior year. This excludes seven in-person Russian events in the first half, compared to five in the same period a year earlier.

Hyve said Wednesday that, with the exception of China, it expects a full schedule of events to run in the financial year as Covid-19-related restrictions continue to be eased globally.

But it did note there were still some “continued Covid-19 disruption in some geographies and challenges across the wider geopolitical environment”.

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