| Russia

Starbucks exits the Russian market, permanently closing 130 stores

Starbucks has announced it will no longer have a brand presence in Russia, having suspended all activity in the country since the beginning of March in response to the invasion of Ukraine

A Starbucks store sign in Moscow, Russia | Photo credit: via Shutterstock

Having announced the suspension of its business in Russia on 8 March, Starbucks has now formally withdrawn its presence in the country following the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

In an update to an open letter sent by then-CEO Kevin Johnson in March, the Seattle-based coffee chain confirmed that it would commence supporting its 2,000 staff in Russia, including pay for six months and assistance in transitioning to new opportunities outside of Starbucks. 

In addition to closing its brick-and-mortar locations, Starbucks said it would also be ceasing the shipment of all branded products to Russia. The Russian market accounts for less than one percent of the Starbucks’ annual revenue, the coffee chain added. 

Russia, where Starbucks has 130 licensed stores operated by Kuwait-based Alshaya Group, has seen an array of western brands suspend or fully withdraw operations as a result of the Ukraine crisis. McDonald’s Corporation recently entered into a sale and purchase agreement to sell its Russian business, including its McCafé outlets, whilst Finnish coffee, beverage and food supplier Paulig completed the sale of its business in Russia at the start of May.

Starbucks has not provided specific details on the financial impact of is Russian exit.

McDonald's, which had a larger presence in the country, said its withdrawal could cost the company up to $1.4bn.

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