Carlsberg follows Heineken with ‘difficult and immediate decision’ to quit Russia
Carlsberg has followed Heineken in quitting Russia, saying the “difficult and immediate decision” would lead to a “substantial” loss.
The Danish brewer becomes the latest major western firm to leave the Kremlin-ruled country in protest of Vladimir Putin’s war.
The company said it has “taken the difficult and immediate decision to seek a full disposal of our business in Russia, which we believe is the right thing to do in the current environment”.
“Upon completion we will have no presence in Russia.”
Carlsberg had long term investments in the country worth more than £2bn (19.2 billion Danish crowns) by the end of last year, which amounted to around 15 per cent of assets or 44 per cent of its equity, according to the company’s annual report.
Fellow brewer, Dutch company Heineken, also quit Russia on Monday at a cost of £335m (€400m).
In a statement posted on social media, the firm said it was “shocked and deeply saddened” by the war.
It had already “stopped new investments and exports to Russia, ended the production, sale and advertising of the Heineken brand, and announced that we will not accept any net financial benefits or profit from our business in Russia.”
On Monday, Heineken announced that “ownership of the business in Russia is no longer sustainable nor viable” and “as a result, we have decided to leave Russia.
“We aim for an orderly transfer of our business to a new owner in full compliance with international and local laws.
It also said it was “essential that we continue with the recently reduced operations during this transition period” to ensure safety of employees and avoid it being nationalised.”
The company also confirmed it would “guarantee the salaries of our 1,800 employees” until the end of 2022.