McDonald’s said Thursday it has begun the process of selling its Russian business to one of its licensees in the country.
Chicago-based hamburger giant said Alexander Govar, who runs 25 restaurants in Siberia, has agreed to buy 850 Russian McDonald’s restaurants and work under the new brand.
McDonald’s did not disclose the sale price. McDonald’s announced on Monday that it is leaving the Russian market more than 30 years later due to the war in Ukraine.
The sale agreement is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to be closed within a few weeks, McDonald’s reported.
McDonald’s has temporarily closed its stores in Russia but is still paying employees. On Monday, she said she would demand that the Russian buyer hire its employees and pay them before closing the sale. He did not identify a potential buyer.
McDonald’s has said it plans to begin removing gold arches and other symbols and signs with its name.
“We have a long history of establishing deep local roots wherever the Arches shine,” McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczynski said in a statement. “We are extremely proud of the 62,000 employees who work in our restaurants, as well as the hundreds of Russian suppliers who support our business and our local franchisees. Their devotion and loyalty to McDonald’s make today’s announcement extremely difficult.
“However, we have a commitment to our global community and must remain steadfast in our values. And our commitment to our values means we can no longer keep the Arch shining there.”
McDonald’s said it still expects to grow 1.5% of seats worldwide in 2022, despite closing with a net increase of 1,300 restaurants.
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