Kazakhtelecom bought out Chocomart
16 April 2019

Telecommunication company "Kazakhtelecom" bought Chocomart. The head of Chocofamily holding Ramil Mukhoryapov told this to the LS correspondent.

Telecommunication company "Kazakhtelecom" bought Chocomart. The head of Chocofamily holding Ramil Mukhoryapov told this to the LS correspondent.

He noted that last year Chocofamily came to the conclusion that the group has several key markets in which the holding has good market shares. These are directions of coupon services, food-tech service and services for online booking and purchase of air and railway tickets. At the same time, the market place is not one of them. Therefore, in December 2017, Chocofamily went out of the business of selling goods online by selling the online hypermarket Chocomart.kz.



Chocomart.kz is an excellent online hypermarket in terms of technology and customer service. However, in view of the growing competition from Sulpak.kz, Alser.kz, Technodom.kz, Kaspi Shop and others, we needed to invest good millions of dollars in marketing in order to gain significant market share. It was an opportunity cost issue. And we decided to concentrate on those areas where we had a significant market share. In early 2017, we announced that we were ready to sell Chocomart.kz



- explained Muhoryapov.


He noted that interest in the deal was shown by Kazakhtelecom, which plans to create the largest platform for selling goods via the Internet. According to Mukhoryapov, the asset went to the buyer six times cheaper than Chocofamily holding had previously invested in its development (about $ 1.5 million of investments).

“Taking into account the resources of Kazakhtelecom and its client base, we hope that Chocomart.kz will receive a new impetus in development. Internet entrepreneurs need a fundamentally different management style, involving a rather mild atmosphere, lack of directives, freedom and flexibility, willingness to go for experiments, a certain courage and willingness to err. I am still confident that if you invest $ 4-5 million in Chocomart, this project will become mega-successful. For example, over the past year, Chocomart went into profit - it was a big victory for our team, given that the project was unprofitable for several years, ”the holding's head advised. The head of Chocofamily also touched on the topic of combining Chocotravel and Aviata. He said that the combined company plans to launch an options program among its employees. The pool will be 5%.

"While the program is not approved, and how it will work, it is still worth discussing. This project on issuing employee options will be separate from Chocofamily, because in this case it was not a takeover, but a merger and management of both we and the partners - equal, "- said the source LS.

He also spoke about plans to enter international markets and noted that the holding will begin to communicate with international investors who have companies operating in different countries of the world in the portfolio.

"We have acquired many different competences for work within Kazakhstan, but we do not yet have the experience of going to other countries. We want to attract people who have these competencies. We do not expect that it will be easy - we will probably spend two or three years learn, "- said about the plans Mukhoryapov.

The interlocutor LS added that he was watching the development of ICO with interest.

“We are witnessing how this method of attracting capital is developing, including from the point of view of legislation and regulation. We see a successful ICO Telegram. I do not rule out that we can change the goal from an IPO to an ICO. Let's see how it goes,” suggested the head of Chocofamily.

He noted that for the time being the combined Aviata.kz and Chocotravel are most ready for expansion in foreign countries. At the same time, according to Mukhoryapov, in the field of food delivery services, they are negotiating to unite with players from such countries as Georgia, Armenia, Belarus, Ukraine, Latvia, Lithuania.

“We communicate, but connecting so many countries at the same time is difficult. Because it’s about consolidation, and most likely no one will have a controlling stake. We will have a share of around 15-20%,” he said. Recall today the services of buying air and railway tickets Chocotravel and Aviata.kz announced their merger. At the same time, in 2017, Chocofamily already bought out the main competitor in the food delivery industry Foodpanda and the main rival in the coupon industry - Besmart. In addition, the company increased its stake in iDoctor.kz from 40% to 67% and thus gained control over the service.

Meanwhile, Muhoryapov announced the details of a possible IPO. In turn, in an interview with LS, Timur Turlov, the general director of the investment company Freedom Finance, said that he plans to launch an option program in his holding company, and gave predictions about the development of Chocofamily.