In response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Publicis Groupe has announced that it is stopping its business and investments in Russia “by ceding the ownership of its agencies to local management, effective immediately.”
According to a statement, Publicis Groupe is handing over control of its Russian operations to Sergey Koptev, Founding Chairman of Publicis in Russia, with the clear contractual condition of ensuring a future for employees there.
“Since the start of the invasion, we have been working on exiting Russia as we strongly condemn the unilateral aggression against Ukraine,” said Arthur Sadoun, CEO & Chairman of Publicis Groupe in a statement.
“We were committed to taking strong actions that fully respond to the gravity of the situation. But we were determined to take the necessary time to come with a solution that was truly people-first, because our 1200 employees in Russia are our people too. We couldn’t just abandon them. By ceding control of our Russian operations to Sergey, we are securing a future path for our colleagues while immediately stopping all of our operations, engagement and investment in Russia.”
According to Publicis Groupe, “As the violence and humanitarian crises in Ukraine deepen, Publicis’ first priority remains the safety of its people and their families. The Groupe is more committed than ever to bringing them the security, relocation and financial support they need in this incredibly difficult time.
“The safety of our people in Ukraine remains our number one focus. We are in daily contact with all 350 of them on an individual basis and doing everything we can to protect them. From security alert systems, to psychological and mental health support, to help with visas, or guaranteeing salaries for everyone for the entire year, we will continue to stand by their side, be exhaustive in the solutions we bring and immediate in the aid we provide” Sadoun added.