Burger King halts Russia operations following Ukraine invasion
Burger King has become the latest fast-food behemoth to cut ties with Russia following the invasion of Ukraine.
Burger King suspended “all of its corporate support for the Russian market,” which includes its franchised operations, marketing and supply chain, Burger King owner’ Restaurants Brands International (RBI), told FOX Business. The company is also “refusing approvals for investment and expansion” in the country.
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Although Burger King has no corporate restaurants in Russia, there are roughly 800 fully franchised Burger King restaurants, which are managed by independent local operators, according to RBI.
“We are watching the attack on Ukraine and its people with horror and are focusing our efforts in the region on contributing to the safety of Ukrainians seeking shelter and security for their families,” RBI said in a note on its website.
MCDONALD’S PAUSING RUSSIA OPERATIONS, TEMPORARILY CLOSING RESTAURANTS
The company says it will continue to redirect “any profits from franchised operations to humanitarian aid for Ukrainian refugees” as the war escalates.
After the fighting started two weeks ago, the company says it immediately donated $3 million to support Ukrainian refugees. The company donated $1 million to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and $2 million of free Whopper meal vouchers for refugees.
Its franchisees in over two dozen European countries are partnering with local nonprofits to distribute the free Whopper meal vouchers to Ukrainian refugees.
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Burger King’s move comes as its rival, McDonald’s, also announced that it will pause operations in Russia, including temporarily closing all of its restaurants in the country, a move that is estimated to cost the company around $50 million per month.
McDonald’s has a total of 847 restaurant locations in Russia. The fast-food giant owns 84% of its Russia locations and 100% of its Ukraine locations.
FOX Business’ Lucas Manfredi contributed to this report.