Starbucks joins McDonald's in closing ALL its Russian stores

KFC faces mounting pressure to shutter its 1,000 Russian restaurants after McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Starbucks all halted business there indefinitely because of Putin’s .   

The chain is the only significant US-owned fast food chain still operating in Russia, after its rivals announced plans to suspend business there indefinitely. 

KFC is owned by Yum!Brands, a Louisville, Kentucky-headquartered operation which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and whose CEO David Gibbs has been with the company since 1989. Yum! also operates 50 Pizza Hut locations across Russia. 

Pepsi, one of the first Western products that was allowed in the former Soviet Union, will no longer be sold in Russia, said PepsiCo, which will continue the sale of essential items such as baby formula. 

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola, which has a huge presence in Russia through a licensed partner that operates 10 bottling plants there, said in a statement that it is suspending all business there. 

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson also confirmed in a note to global staff that the iconic coffee chain would be closing its 130 locations in Russia and halting all sales, but continuing to pay its 2,000 employees there.All the shuttered cafes are run by licensed owner-operators, rather than by the Seattle-based coffee giant itself. 

Meanwhile, McDonald’s also said it will close its 850 locations in Russia, but continue paying its 62,000 employees there ‘who have poured their heart and soul into our McDonald’s brand.’  None of the brands who have pulled out have given any indication as to when they may resume business. 

The moves leave KFC, owned by Kentucky-based Yum Brands, as the final major US quick-service restaurant chain still operating in Russia.

KFC has one of the largest footprints in Russia with more than 1,000 locations. Pictured: A KFC location in the Evroreisky (European) shopping mall in Moscow on Monday

KFC has one of the largest footprints in Russia with more than 1,000 locations.Pictured: A KFC location in the Evroreisky (European) shopping mall in Moscow on Monday

Coca-Cola, operates 10 bottling plants in Russia through a licensed partner, said in a statement that it is suspending all business there. Pictured: Plant in Samara, Russia

Coca-Cola, operates 10 bottling plants in Russia through a licensed partner, said in a statement that it is suspending all business there. Pictured: Plant in Samara, Russia

Starbucks' logo seen at the first Starbucks opened in Russia, at the Pushkino retail park outside Moscow. The chain is closing all locations in Russia indefinitely

Starbucks’ logo seen at the first Starbucks opened in Russia, at the Pushkino retail park outside Moscow.The chain is closing all locations in Russia indefinitely

McDonald's, like this one in Moscow, and across Russia and Ukraine account for nine per cent of McDonald's annual revenue. Now they are closing

McDonald’s, like this one in Moscow, and across Russia and Ukraine account for 9 percent of McDonald’s annual revenue.Now they are closing

In a statement to DailyMail.com on Tuesday, Yum Brands said that it is suspending all investment and development of new restaurants in Russia, and that it will donate all profits from operations in Russia to humanitarian efforts.

‘Like so many across the world, we are shocked and saddened by the tragic events unfolding in Ukraine,’ a Yum Brands spokesman said. 

But so far the company has resisted calls to close restaurants in Russia, which include about 1,000 KFC locations and 50 Pizza Huts. 

Most of those locations are operated through franchise or licensing agreements, which may complicate the company’s ability to shut them down. 

Coca-Cola said its business in Russia and Ukraine contributed about 1 to 2 percent of the company’s net operating revenue in 2021.

‘Our hearts are with the people who are enduring unconscionable effects from these tragic events in Ukraine,’ the company said.’We will continue to monitor and assess the situation as circumstances evolve.’ 

Pepsi has two production plants in Russia and sells snacks and beverages in the country, according to its most recent annual report for 2021. 

PepsiCo, whose sodas were one of the few Western products allowed in the Soviet Union prior to its collapse, said it would continue to sell daily essentials, such as milk and other dairy offerings, baby formula and baby food, in Russia. 

‘As many of you know, we have been operating in Russia for more than 60 years, and we have a place in many Russian homes,’ PepsiCo CEO CEO Ramon Laguarta said in a note to global employees.

‘However, given the horrific events occurring in Ukraine we are announcing the suspension of the sale of Pepsi-Cola, and our global beverage brands in Russia, including 7Up and Mirinda,’ he continued.

Laguarta said PepsiCo is also be suspending capital investments and all advertising and promotional activities in Russia. 

An ad billboard for Pepsi sits above a sign for a McDonald's Restaurant in Moscow in a file photo. Both brands are suspending sales and operations in Russia indefinitely

An ad billboard for Pepsi sits above a sign for a McDonald’s Restaurant in Moscow in a file photo.Both brands are suspending sales and operations in Russia indefinitely

McDonald’s directly owns and operates most of its locations in Russia, where it has had an iconic presence since opening a restaurant in Moscow in 1990, signaling the end of the Cold War. 

In an open letter to employees, McDonald’s President and CEO Chris Kempckinski said closing those stores for now is the right thing to do.

‘Our values mean we cannot ignore the needless human suffering unfolding in Ukraine,’ Kempczinski said.

Kempczinski said it’s impossible to know when the company will be able to reopen its Russian stores.

‘The situation is extraordinarily challenging for a global brand like ours, and there are many considerations,’ Kempczinski wrote in the letter.McDonald’s works with hundreds of Russian suppliers, for example, and serves millions of customers each day. 

McDonald’s has also temporarily closed 108 restaurants in Ukraine and continues to pay those employees.

McDonald’s could take a big financial hit because of the closures.In a recent regulatory filing, the Chicago-headquartered company said its restaurants in Russia and Ukraine contributed 9 percent of its annual revenue, or around $2billion.

Unlike other big fast food brands in Russia that are owned by franchisees – including KFC, pizza hut altamont ave schenectady Hut, Starbucks and Burger King – McDonald´s owns 84 percent of its Russian locations.

McDonald’s said Tuesday it has donated more than $5 million to its employee assistance fund and to relief efforts.  

The revenue generated by McDonald's in Russia and Ukraine amounts to over $2billion a year for the chain

The revenue generated by McDonald’s in Russia and Ukraine amounts to over $2billion a year for the chain

People eat outside a McDonald's fast food restaurant in Moscow in October 2021 - but the giant's 850 Russian restaurants have now been shuttered due to Putin's invasion of Ukraine

People eat outside a McDonald’s fast food restaurant in Moscow in October 2021 – but the giant’s 850 Russian restaurants have now been shuttered due to Putin’s invasion of Ukraine

It has also parked a Ronald McDonald House Charities mobile medical care unit at the Polish border with Ukraine; another mobile care unit is en route to the border in Latvia, the company said.

In his own memo, the Starbucks CEO said that ‘we condemn the horrific attacks on Ukraine by Russia and our hearts go out to all those affected.’

‘We continue to watch the tragic events unfold and, today, we have decided to suspend all business activity in Russia, including shipment of all Starbucks products,’ Johnson added. 

Many corporations have ceased operations in the country in protest of the Ukraine invasion. 

Among them is consumer goods conglomerate Unilever, which on Tuesday said it has suspended all imports and exports of its products into and out of Russia, and that it will not invest any further capital into the country.

Last week, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli – a trustee of the state’s pension fund, which is a McDonald’s investor – sent a letter to McDonald’s urging it to consider pausing its operations in Russia.

‘We believe that companies that continue to operate in Russia and invest in Russian assets face significant and growing legal, compliance, operational, human rights and personnel and reputational risks,’ DiNapoli wrote.

In a speech, President Joe Biden promised to hunt down oligarchs’ assets, praised Ukrainian resistance and condemned the Russian leader for failing to allow ceasefires for humanitarian relief.

‘Putin seems determined to continue on his murderous path no matter the cost,’ he said. 

But as he tightened the economic noose on Moscow, Biden said Putin had miscalculated.

‘He has already turned two million Ukrainians into refugees,’ he said. 

‘Russia may continue to grind out its advance at a horrible price, but this much is already clear: Ukraine will never be a victory for Putin.

‘Putin may be able to take a city, but he’ll never be able to hold the country. 

‘And if we do not respond to Putin’s assault on global peace and stability today, the cost of freedom, and to the American people, will be even greater tomorrow.’

Firefighters in action trying to extinguish a fire at a chemical storage facility, on the outskirts of Brovary, the eastern frontline of Kyiv region, after it was shelled on Tuesday. The Russian invasion has displaced hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians

Firefighters in action trying to extinguish a fire at a chemical storage facility, on the outskirts of Brovary, the eastern frontline of Kyiv region, after it was shelled on Tuesday.The Russian invasion has displaced hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians

Civilians prepare to board a train during snowfall as they flee Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Odessa, Ukraine

Civilians prepare to board a train during snowfall as they flee Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, in Odessa, Ukraine