Starbucks decides to exit Russia

Employer vows to continue supporting nearly 2,000 workers in the country

Starbucks decides to exit Russia

Starbucks has decided to leave Russia amid the country’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

“Starbucks has made the decision to exit and no longer have a brand presence in the market,” the employer says in a short press release.

The move comes about two and a half months after the company announced a pause in its operations in the country.

The employer also promises to continue supporting its employees in Russia, including through compensation and assistance in finding new employment.

“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,” it says.

The move ends Starbucks’ 15-year presence on Russian soil. As of March, the company had 130 Russian locations, all owned and operated by a partner, according to a report from CTV News.

With the move, Starbucks follows in the footsteps of McDonald’s, which announced its exit from Russia last week after 30 years of operation there. The humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, along with an unpredictable operating environment, made the company decide that continued ownership in Russia is no longer tenable — nor is it consistent with McDonald’s values, it said.

Meanwhile, IKEA also halted its Russian operations back in March.

In February, the Canadian government announced it is taking immediate measures to support Ukrainians and their families. Ontario Premier Doug Ford also said he wants the federal government to let people seeking refuge from Ukraine come to his province.

In March, in addition to opening its borders to Ukrainians fleeing the invasion by Russia, Ottawa called on employers to offer them employment through a new job bank.

Last month, Ottawa announced it will resume Express Entry draws, and invitations for candidates to apply for permanent residence are set to begin in early July.

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