Nestlé, Sony and Caterpillar join Russian exodus as pressure mounts on Western companies to act Business News

Nestle and video game maker Sony are among the latest companies to roll back operations in Russia amid calls to isolate Moscow as the Ukrainian invasion entered week three.

Nestlé, the world’s largest packaged food group, cigarette maker Philip Morris International and Sony announced on Wednesday that their business activities would be significantly reduced in Russia and all capital investment would be suspended. However, they added that they would continue to provide the essentials.

Engineering giant Caterpillar said it was leaving Russia as operations in the country “became increasingly difficult, including supply chain disruptions and sanctions”.

Snack company Mondelez International also said it would scale back operations while aiming to maintain the “continuity” of Russia’s food supply. The new announcements followed actions by rivals Procter & Gamble and Unilever to halt investment in Russia.

Similarly, Philip Morris’ call followed Imperial Brands’ decision to suspend operations in Russia while British American Tobacco Plc said its Russian business continued to operate, despite having suspended capital investments.

Sony, whose film studio has already halted releases in Russia, took further action on Wednesday, saying its PlayStation gaming unit would halt shipments and operations in Russia. “Sony Interactive Entertainment joins the global community in calling for peace in Ukraine,” he said.

Many companies find it difficult to do business in Russia due to international sanctions imposed on Moscow after the invasion of Ukraine and a blow to the supply chain. Meanwhile, growing anti-Russian sentiment and calls to boycott the country have also led companies to take steps to scale back their business in Russia.

Major companies such as McDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Starbucks have already announced the suspension of their business activities in Russia due to the invasion of Ukraine.

McDonald’s said it was temporarily closing its roughly 850 restaurants in Russia, while Starbucks also said its 100 cafes would close.

According to a list curated by the Yale School of Management, the number of companies that have so far limited their operations in Russia has exceeded 300.

Russia, however, denied that these measures will have an impact on its economy. A senior Russian ruling party official has warned that foreign companies that close could end up having their operations nationalized.

Additional reports by agencies

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This notice was published: 2022-03-10 07:00:00

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