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Consumer Giants and Russia

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McDonald’s has decided to temporarily close all of its restaurants in Russia and “pause operations” in the country.

“We understand the impact this will have on our Russian colleagues and partners, which is why we are prepared to support all three legs of the stool in Ukraine and Russia. This includes salary continuation for all McDonald’s employees in Russia,” McDonald’s Corp. CEO Chris Kempczinski said in a statement posted on the fast-food giant’s website.

McDonald’s has 850 restaurants in Russia, 62,000 employees and hundreds of local suppliers and partners.

Also joining in is consumer giant Unilever.

“We continue to condemn the war in Ukraine as a brutal and senseless act by the Russian state. Our business operations in Ukraine have stopped and we are now fully focused on ensuring the safety of our Ukrainian employees and their families, including helping with their evacuation where necessary, and providing additional financial support.” Unilever CEO Alan Jope said in a statement posted on the company’s website.

“We will not invest any further capital into the country, nor will we profit from our presence in Russia. We will continue to supply our everyday essential food and hygiene products made in Russia to people in the country. We will keep this under close review.” 

The company has suspended all imports and exports of our products into and out of Russia, and we will stop all media and advertising spend. Unilever brands include Lipton, Dove, Vaseline, Cif, Signal, Domestos, Rexona AXE, Chistaya Liniya, Barkhatnye Ruchki and Inmarko.

Coca-Cola has also announced it is suspending its business in Russia. Coca-Cola owns ten plants in Russia that produce soft drinks and juices. A statement on their website declared this but no measures were announced.

Starbucks is another company condemning Russia. They are halting its business in Russia, including exports of its products to the country and immediately pause store operations and will provide support to the nearly 2,000 partners in Russia who depend on Starbucks for their livelihood. Starbucks runs 130 coffee houses.

PepsiCo has announced its decision to suspend the sale of beverages in Russia. The sale of Pepsi-Cola, global beverage brands in Russia, including 7Up and Mirinda.

The American beverage and food company “must stay true to the humanitarian aspect” of its business, and, therefore, will continue to sell its other products in Russia, including milk and other dairy offerings, baby formula and baby food.

PepsiCo is also suspending its capital investments and all advertising and promotional activities in the Russian market.

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