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A.S. Watson Group Acquires Stake in Ukraine

Posted: July 19, 2006

A.S. Watson Group, the retail division of Hutchison Whampoa Limited, announced its move into the Ukraine market by acquiring a 65% stake in the country's number one health and beauty chain, DC. This acquisition is subject to anti-monopoly approval as part of A.S. Watson's continued expansion into Central and Eastern Europe. It also creates a partnership with Asnova Holding.

"As the leading health and beauty chain in Ukraine, DC presents strong potential for the group's long term development in Central and Eastern Europe. We foresee a very healthy economic growth in the Ukraine in the coming years...we expect to capture a considerable share of the annual growth of health and beauty retail in the country," said Ian Wade, managing director, A.S. Watson Group.

The group is looking to double the number of DC stores in the near future. After the acquisition, DC management will continue to operate the day-to-day business with the support of additional resources from A.S. Watson Group to grow the brand further.