After 15 years of operations in Russia, Starbucks Corp. will shutter all of its stores across the country. The decision comes as dozens of western companies pull out of Russia to protest President Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine.
"Starbucks has made the decision to exit and no longer have a brand presence in the market," Starbucks told Bussiness Insider in a statement.
"We will continue to support the nearly 2,000 green apron partners in Russia, including pay for six months and assistance for partners to transition to new opportunities outside of Starbucks."
Starbucks entered Russia in 2007. All stores are operated by a franchise company based in Kuwait called the Alshaya Group. The stores represent less than 1% of global annual revenue.
All Starbucks stores in the country have been closed since March 8. There's no word on what Alshaya plans to do with the stores.
The decision to pull out comes as dozens of western companies, such as Exxon Mobil, American Express, Goldman Sachs, Visa, Heineken, PepsiCo, Bloomberg, Apple, IBM, and many others, have suspended operations or divested investments in Russia.
A week ago, McDonald's announced it would sell 847 restaurants in the country, take a 1.2-$1.4 billion write-off, and recognize "foreign currency translation losses.
Over the last three decades, western companies have flocked to Russia to open stores and build out operations. However, since the invasion of Ukraine and the severing of relations between Moscow and the West, investments into the country have reversed.