• Friday, June 21, 2024
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List of big companies exiting Russia gets longer

List of big companies exiting Russia gets longer

As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues to disrupt global markets markets, more big companies are frowning on Russia’s show of power and are taking action to show solidarity with Ukraine by exiting the world’s largest country one after the other across different sectors.

About two weeks after the invasion started, at least 40 companies have left Russia or stopped the sale of their products and services in the county in no particular order.

Manufacturing

Car and truck makers such as General Motors Company, Ford Motor Company, Volkswagen AG, Toyota Motor Corporation, Harley-Davidson, Mercedes Benz, and Volkswagen, announced they would halt shipments to Russia or shut down assembling plants in the country. Volvo and Daimler Truck Holding AG also suspended business activities in the country.

“We clearly stand for peaceful global cooperation and categorically reject any form of military force; we have decided to suspend our business activities in Russia with immediate effect until further notice,” Daimler tweeted via its official handle.

A consumer goods company, Inditex, which has 502 stores in Russia including 86 Zara outlets, is also temporarily closing all its shops in Russia and halting online sales, saying it cannot guarantee the continuity of operations and trading conditions. Nike, H&M, Ikea and Mango have all followed suit.

French food group Danone said in a statement on its website that it was suspending investments in Russia, and that one of its two factories had closed in Ukraine, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Tech companies

Samsung Electronics, the leading smartphone seller in Russia, and HP, the largest supplier of personal computers to Russia, suspended exports of all its products to the country.

Apple has halted sales of iPhones and started limiting Apple Pay services.

Google has also paused Russia’s ability to profit off of content across its services while YouTube is blocking state-sponsored ads from Russian channels on its platform, and is limiting video recommendations to Russian channels

Microsoft, in a blog post on Friday, condemned Russia’s “unjustified, unprovoked and unlawful invasion” of Ukraine and consequently suspended sale of products and services in Russia.

IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and Spotify have also followed suit.

Read also: Russia-Ukraine Conflict: EY joins PwC and KPMG to exit Russia

Oil and gas

Russia, a major producer of oil and gas, has seen some energy giants exit the country by withdrawing and suspending operations.

Shell Plc announced on Tuesday its intention to withdraw from its involvement in all Russian hydrocarbons, including crude oil, petroleum products, gas and liquefied natural gas in a phased manner, aligned with new government guidance.

The energy giant said in a statement that as an immediate first step, it would stop all spot purchases of Russian crude oil, adding that it would also shut its service stations, aviation fuels and lubricants operations in Russia.

ExxonMobil said last week it would exit Russia oil and gas operations that it valued at more than $4 billion and halt new investment.

British oil giant BP said it would abandon its nearly 20 percent stake in Russian state-owned oil and gas company Rosneft.

Equinor, Norway’s state-controlled oil company, has said it was quitting its investments in Russia.

Accounting/consulting firms

The four largest professional services networks in the world, namely PwC, KPMG, EY, and Deloitte have announced the decision to stop operations in the country.

McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group and Bain & Company have halted work for Russian clients, while Grant Thornton cut ties with its Russian associate. Visa, MasterCard, Paypal, and American Express have also suspended operations in Russia.

Entertainment & media

In a bid to tighten its grip on information circulation, Russia passed a law criminalising false information about the invasion, with up to 15 years in prison and fines. This led to the restriction of some social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and TikTok.

As a form of retaliation, these platforms blocked the official media profiles of Russia, while Netflix and TikTok have suspended and limited most of their services in the country.

Similarly, Hollywood studios such as Walt Disney Company, Paramount Pictures, Sony Corporation, and AT&T Inc.’s Warner Media and Comcast Corp.’s Universal Pictures have also halted or postponed the release of movies in Russia.

Warner Bros studios said it was pausing the release of “The Batman,” which was slated for release this week. And Sony said it is postponing all of its planned theatrical releases in the region, while Paramount picture’s The Lost City and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 will be withheld from the Russian market.

Following the recently passed law, international media organisations like BBC, Bloomberg News, and CNN International, suspended their journalistic operations.

According to experts, the companies are not just exiting to show their displeasure about the invasion but also because of international sanctions, the closure of airspace, and transport links due to the war.