McDonald's says it will leave Russia completely

The iconic brand will end its three-decade run in Russia, following the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

Updated: May 16, 2022 - 3:05pm

Following a temporary shut down of more than 800 restaurants in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, McDonald's has announced it will leave Russia altogether following a three-decade run in the country. 

The fast-food burger chain will sell its Russian business – citing the war in Ukraine and the subsequent "unpredictable operating environment" as reasons that led the company to "conclude that continued ownership of the business in Russia is no longer tenable, nor is it consistent with McDonald's values."

Once the sale of the company's Russian businesses is finalized, the chain restaurants in Russia will be "de-Arched," meaning the locations will no longer be permitted to use the McDonald's name, logo, or menu. The company says its employees will continue to be paid until the transaction closes and that they will have "future employment with any potential buyer."

McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski says he remains proud of the more than 60,000 workers employed by the company in Russia and that the decision to sell the business was a difficult one. 

However, he said, "we have a commitment to our global community and must remain steadfast in our values. And our commitment to our values means that we can no longer keep the Arches shining there."