Coca Cola, Starbucks and McDonald's suspend business activity in Russia

Drinks giant joins growing list of firms to suspend activities in Russia in response to the war in Ukraine.

Coca Cola, Starbucks and McDonald’s suspend business activity in Russia iStock

Coca-Cola has has become the latest multinational corporation to announce it is suspending its business in Russia.

In a statement on its website, the drinks giant said on Tuesday: “The Coca-Cola Company announced today that it is suspending its business in Russia.

“Our hearts are with the people who are enduring unconscionable effects from these tragic events in Ukraine.

“We will continue to monitor and assess the situation as circumstances evolve.”

The move sees Coca Cola join a growing list of firms suspending activities in Russia in response to the war in Ukraine, following similar announcements by online fashion group Asos and sportswear brand Nike.

Tech giants Apple, Google and Twitter have also cut down their business in Russia since the start of the conflict.

Meanwhile, McDonald’s said it is temporarily closing all of its 850 restaurants in Russia.

The fast food giant’s president and CEO Chris Kempckinski said it “cannot ignore the needless human suffering unfolding in Ukraine”.

McDonald’s said it will continue paying its 62,000 employees in Russia “who have poured their heart and soul into our McDonald’s brand”.

But in an open letter to employees, Kempckinski said closing those stores for now is the right thing to do

The decision comes after the company faced a huge backlash and people started to boycott the fast food chain.

Elsewhere, Starbucks also announced it is “suspending all business activity in Russia”.

The company said that its partner, Alshaya Group, which operates more than 100 cafes in Russia, will “provide support to nearly 2000 partners in the country who depend on Starbucks for their livelihood”.

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said in an open letter to the brand’s partners that it would suspend all business activity in Russia, in light of the “horrific attacks on Ukraine”. He added that the shipment of all Starbucks products to Russia will also be paused.

The hot drinks brand “will provide support to the nearly 2000 partners in Russia who depend on Starbucks for their livelihood,” Johnson said.

“Through this dynamic situation, we will continue to make decisions that are true to our mission and values and communicate with transparency,” he added.