EXCLUSIVE Nike to fully exit Russia, will scale down over coming months
PARIS/COPENHAGEN, June 23 (Reuters) – U.S. sportswear maker Nike (NKE.N) is making a full exit from Russia, three months after suspending its operations there, the company said in an emailed statement Thursday.
Nike said on March 3 it would temporarily suspend operations at all its Nike-owned and -operated stores in Russia in response to Moscow’s actions in Ukraine, adding that those still open were operated by independent partners.
On Thursday, it joined other major Western brands like McDonald’s and Google in confirming it will leave the country completely.
“NIKE has made the decision to leave the Russian marketplace. Our priority is to ensure we are fully supporting our employees while we responsibly scale down our operations over the coming months,” the firm said in an emailed statement.
Russian media reported in May that Nike had not renewed agreements with its largest franchisee in Russia, Inventive Retail Group (IRG), which operates 37 Nike-branded stores in Russia through its subsidiary Up And Run.
Reporting by Mimosa Spencer, Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen and Richa Naidu; editing by Jason Neely and Bernadette Baum