The American fast food giant McDonald's, which had closed its stores in Russia in early March, announced on Monday that it was withdrawing from the country and selling all its activities in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. "We are committed to our global community and must remain adamant about our values," Group CEO Chris Kempczinski said in a company statement. “Respecting our values means we can no longer keep the Arches (McDonald’s logo)” in Russia, he added. Present in the country for more than thirty years, McDonald's has 850 restaurants and 62,000 employees.
The company had announced the temporary closure of all its restaurants and the suspension of its operations in the country on March 8, following in the footsteps of other multinationals which had distanced themselves from Moscow. "The humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine and the resulting unpredictable economic environment led McDonald's to conclude that the continuation of our activities in Russia was no longer tenable or consistent with our values," said the American giant.
9% of total McDonald's revenue
The group estimates that it will record a non-cash charge (not giving rise to any cash outflow) of between $1.2 billion and $1.4 billion due to its withdrawal from the country. Russia, where McDonald's directly manages more than 80% of the restaurants bearing its name, accounts for 9% of the company's total revenue and 3% of its operating profit.
The group is seeking to resell its entire Russian portfolio to a local player. Until a transaction is finalized, McDonald's is committed to continuing to pay its employees and wants to ensure that they continue to be hired by the future acquirer.