BauMax to Withdraw from Turkey
Austrian home-improvement DIY chain BauMax has officially announced its withdrawal from Turkey.
BauMax owner Karl-Heinz Essl communicated the news on Austrian ORF television and repeated previous information that the company also mulls leaving other markets in Southeast Europe.
He acknowledged that his offer to sell his contemporary art collection to the Austrian government for EUR 250 M and use the money to save jobs in the company had been declined.
With 10 000-strong staff in nine countries, BauMax has had a significant presence in the Balkan countries since mid-2000s.
In 2010 it extended its business by entering the Turkish market in EUR 60 M worth investment, but has recently struggled to keep afloat and has declared it would put its main effort to save its branches at home.
Germany's Praktiker, which is considered Baumax's rival, also announced an exit from Turkey in February 2013.
February this year saw French DIY chain Leroy Merlin announcing plans to end its presence in Turkey within 6 months.
Earlier this week Austria's Die Presse reported for the first time that BauMax was mulling a pullback from Bulgaria and Eastern Europe.
The chain has opened six branches in Turkey, 15 in Romania and eight in Bulgaria, whereas 65 of a total 158 are in Austria.