Top brands shut Russian stores as Ukraine war persists


Prada, Fendi, Chanel, Swatch Group and other international luxury brands are closing their boutiques in Russia as the war in Ukraine enters its third year, the Ukrainian Council of Shopping Centers (UCSC) reported on April 3.

Prada is leading the exodus by closing three of its Moscow outlets, including a prominent location in GUM (shopinh centre facing Red Square) reducing its presence from six stores at the start of 2024. Similarly, Fendi is set to close its doors in Moscow, not renewing leases for three locations and planning to exit its TsUM (another luxury shopping mall) boutique by Aug. 1.

Chanel's Russian operations are following suit, opting to end leases for its 17 boutiques, predominantly located in Moscow. Meanwhile, the Swatch Group has already concluded leases for 15 stores across Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other locales.

In contrast, several luxury retailers like Gucci, Hermes, and Louis Vuitton remain operational in Russia, with impending lease expirations prompting forthcoming decisions about their presence in the country.

Despite these significant exits, only 27% of foreign luxury retailers halted Russian operations post-invasion, with conglomerates such as LVMH, Kering, and Richemont maintaining leases in Russian shopping venues. This cautious approach aligns with a broader trend identified by the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE), which noted that under 10% of foreign firms have officially severed ties with Russia, highlighting a reluctance among global businesses to exit the Russian market entirely.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine