There are 800 Burger King restaurants in Russia.
As much as the company says it wants to, it hasn’t been able to suspend operations there because the business partner that’s in charge of operations refuses to close them.
Businessman Alexander Kolobov is in charge of daily operations and oversight in Russia and controls the majority of Burger King’s business in the country.
Burger King’s owner, Restaurant Brands International, said in an open letter, “internally, we have been working around the clock to do all the right things.”
RBI says it’s a “complicated legal process” to pull out of Russia and cannot just shut down the business.
It added that it has taken multiple actions to leave Russia, including demanding “the suspension of Burger King restaurant operations in Russia.”
RBI says it has also started the process of disposing of its ownership stake in the business, suspending corporate support for the Russian market, and redirecting profits from Russia to the United Nations’ refugee agency.
Burger King entered Russia about ten years ago.
Other Western companies that remain in Russia are facing similar issues in suspending operations.