Business

Some Western companies refuse to join the corporate exodus from Russia following the invasion of Ukraine

Some Western companies refuse to join the corporate exodus from Russia following the invasion of Ukraine

The corporate exodus from Russia continued on Tuesday as McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Starbucks and Pepsi announced they were temporarily suspending operations in Russia following Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Hundreds of well-known companies, from Apple to Levi’s, announced early in the war that they would stop doing business with Russia.

Consumers began to pressure big brands to hold on as hashtags like #BoycottMcDonalds and #BoycottCocaCola were trending on Twitter in recent days.

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Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, a professor at Yale University, also compiled a list of a few dozen companies “which remain in Russia with significant exposure”.

A Morning Consult poll found that 75% of Americans support companies that cut trade ties with Russia because of the invasion.

Here’s a look at some of the notable brands keeping their operations open in Russia as of Tuesday:

Philip Morris

Packets of Marlboro cigarettes are displayed for sale in a convenience store. (Reuters/Brian Snyder)

tobacco giant Philip Morris first entered the Russian market in the mid-1970s when it signed an agreement with the Soviet Union to produce cigarettes.

The company now has 4,100 employees in two factories in Krasnodar and St. Petersburg, as well as 100 sales offices across Russia.

On February 25, the company said it was suspension of operations at its plant in Kharviv, Ukraine, to ensure the safety of its workers there.

John Deere

John Deere, the world’s largest agricultural equipment manufacturer, has been doing business in Russia for more than a century and opened a parts manufacturing and distribution plant near Moscow in 2010.

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caterpillar

A Caterpillar 279D compact track loader on a demolition site. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

Caterpillar opened its first office in Russia in 1973 and now has a distribution center in Moscow and a manufacturing plant in Tosno, about 48 km southeast of St. Petersburg.

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The company supplies parts and machinery to a range of industries in Russia, including oil, mining, infrastructure and transportation.

Daddy Johns

Christopher Wynne, managing director of franchisee Papa John’s, attends an interview with Reuters in Moscow, Russia July 21, 2017. (REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov)

Robert M. Lynch, CEO of Papa John’s, said in a Feb. 24 conference call that the restaurant franchise has 185 locations in Russia.

“It will depend on the extent of the disruption and the impact of this activity,” he said of the company’s operations at the time.

Hyatt

Hyatt has five hotels in Russia, including two in Moscow, two in Yekaterinburg and one in Sochi. A sixth Hyatt hotel will soon open in Rostov-on-Don.

“We are heartbroken by the devastation unfolding in Ukraine and the mounting tragedies resulting from military actions, loss of life and dislocation of hundreds of thousands of people,” Hyatt wrote in a statement March 4.

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March

Mars, the iconic candy brand that owns snacks like Skittles, Snickers, Milky Way and others, has invested more than $2 billion in Russia, according to Yale’s tally.

Other well-known companies, including Cummins, Marriott, Hilton, Nestlé, Honeywell, Abbott Labs and others, have not made public their intention to close their operations in Russia.

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Sonnenfeld, the Yale professor who has followed business in Russia, said there was reason to think the boycott might work, noting that the withdrawal in the 1980s of more than 200 companies from South Africa to cause of apartheid had helped strengthen American foreign policy.

“Despite the cost of abandoning major investments and loss of business, there is a strong reputational incentive to pull out,” Sonnenfeld wrote Monday in a Fortune Editorial.

“Companies that don’t walk away face a far greater outpouring of resentment from the American public than they face on climate change, voting rights, gun safety, security reform. immigration or border security.”

Reuters contributed to this report.