The Seattle coffee company announced its decision to shut down all 130 of its locations and discontinue its brand presence in Russia in a message that was sent out to staff on Monday. Starbucks has announced that it will continue to pay its almost 2,000 employees in Russia for the next six months and will also assist these individuals in finding alternative employment opportunities.
This decision comes on the heels of McDonald’s withdrawal from the Russian market a week ago. An existing McDonald’s franchisee in Russia is purchasing the chain’s restaurants, practically all of which are currently held by McDonald’s themselves. The restaurants will not be permitted to use the McDonald’s name or menu in any way.
Alshaya Group, a franchise operator based in Kuwait, owns and manages the retail locations of Starbucks around the world. On Monday, a spokesman for Alshaya referred inquiries about the company to Starbucks.
2007 was the year when Starbucks joined the Russian market. At the beginning of March, just after Russia began its invasion of Ukraine, Starbucks made the announcement that the company would continue business as usual in Russia but would contribute any proceeds to humanitarian aid operations in Ukraine.
However, a few days later — shortly after Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, McDonald’s, and other companies temporarily ceased their business in Russia — Starbucks reversed direction and temporarily closed its outlets in Russia.
Kevin Johnson, who was serving as CEO of Starbucks Corporation at the time, sent a statement to the “Through this dynamic situation, we will continue to make decisions that are true to our mission and values and communicate with transparency,” then Starbucks Corp. CEO Kevin Johnson wrote in a message to employees.
The preceding is a summary of an article that originally appeared on BrietBart News.