Pavel Grachev: Detsky Mir – a successful business in a highly competitive niche

Pavel Grachev is one of those Russian entrepreneurs who do not limit themselves to investments alone but are always eager to make a difference in company management. At Detsky Mir, Pavel Grachev successfully brought about the sustainable development agenda and put a number of projects into action.

Short bio

The aspiring entrepreneur was born in 1973 in Leningrad (currently St. Petersburg). He received a law degree at the University of Trieste (1997) in Italy and at the St. Petersburg State University (1998).

One of Pavel Grachev’s first jobs was the law firm Pavia e Ansaldo operating in Italy and other countries. From 1997 to 2005, Mr. Grachev headed the company’s branch in Moscow.

In 2010, Mr. Grachev accepted the positions of President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board at OJSC Uralkali. He headed the company until 2013.

In 2014, Pavel Grachev joined the Board of Directors and took over as CEO of PJSC Polyus, the largest gold mining company in Russia. He worked in this position until 2022.

Detsky Mir – attention to sustainable development issues

Detsky Mir was a successful investment for Pavel Grachev, who bought a stake in the company in March 2021. He became a member of its Board of Directors and focused on implementing and adopting sustainable growth and environmental responsibility.

Once a shareholder of Detsky Mir, Pavel Grachev devoted his attention to the environmental agenda and responsible consumption. Under his leadership, all stores and offices were switched to energy-efficient light sources, which made it possible to save electricity. In addition, adopted electronic document management cut down paper consumption.

Pavel Grachev believed that reducing the environmental burden is one of the most ground-breaking endeavors. To do this, Detsky Mir stepped on a path to embracing eco-packaging by replacing non-degradable plastic bags. Across all stores, cashiers started offering the customers to try paper bags and fabric shoppers instead of plastic packaging. Along with that, children and adults received an opportunity to expand their environmental knowledge – store managers explained the harm that plastic packaging brings to nature. By the end of 2021, more than 840 thousand pieces of disposable and reusable eco-friendly packaging had been sold.

Another large-scale environmental program involved collecting of old clothing and sending it for recycling and disposal. Each participant received a discount coupon, which they could use for their next purchase in a Detsky Mir store.

In addition to sustainable development, while in Detsky Mir, Pavel Grachev was fully immersed in the chain expansion. By late 2021, Detsky Mir’s retail chain consisted of about 1,000 stores. 2021 saw a 15% increase in revenue compared to the previous year.

In the fall of 2022, Pavel Grachev resigned from the Board of Directors of Detsky Mir and sold his stake to the investment consortium headed by A. Zuev who is the founder of Korablik, the children’s retailer. On May 2, 2023, the businessmen announced that the deal was closed.

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