Some major global corporations, such as McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Burger King, have temporarily ceased operations in Ukraine, signaling their strong support for the country.
Subway, though, is an exception.
Subway, which has 446 franchised locations across the country, has so far refused to cut connections with Russia.
Customers all over the world have reacted negatively to the company’s choice.
Calls to boycott Subway have gone viral on social media, with Twitter users expressing surprise that the brand was included in the list of companies refusing to leave Russia.
Some users expressed concern that a boycott would only impact local franchise owners who had previously been sanctioned, rather than the firm itself.
In Russia, Subway does not have a corporate presence “according to a company statement
“In Russia, there are over 450 franchised restaurants, all of which are independently owned and run by local franchisees and managed by a master franchisee.
“We have minimal insight into the day-to-day operations of these independent franchisees and their restaurants since we don’t have direct control over them.”
Other franchise-based businesses, such as Starbucks and Burger King, have halted operations in Russia. Starbucks has temporarily closed 130 of its licensed shops across the country, and Burger King has shut down around 800 of its franchises.
Yum! Brands, which owns 1,000 KFC franchises and many Pizza Hut stores in Russia, has likewise stopped supporting such eateries.
Subway announced that any proceeds from operations in Russia will be directed to “humanitarian activities aiding Ukrainians who have been harmed by the war,” and that it is striving to offer meals for Ukrainian refugees in its restaurants around Europe.
But that’s also what firms like Starbucks and Burger King, which have already ceased operations in Russia, have promised to do.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky advised Americans to cease buying products that support Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Russia in an address to Congress on Wednesday. He urged all American companies to “leave Russia” and “leave their market immediately because it’s saturated with competition” in a fiery address.
Subway isn’t the only corporation avoiding taking action in Russia. Papa John’s, another iconic fast-food brand, is still operating in the country.
According to a list published by Jeffrey Sonnenfeld of the Yale Chief Executive Leadership Institute, roughly 30 significant corporations continue to do business in Russia.