Publicis Groupe announced that it is halting its business and investments in Russia by ceding the ownership of its agencies to local management, effective immediately.
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.
Arthur Sadoun, CEO & Chairman of Publicis Groupe said that the group strongly condemn the unilateral aggression against Ukraine.
“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 up with a truly people-first solution 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”, said Arthur Sadoun, CEO & Chairman of 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 company statement read.
“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 be immediate in the aid we provide” Sadoun added.
IPG has also suspended its operations in Russia.
“By having taken the time these past two weeks to plan for this eventuality, we will be able to leave our Russian teams with enough capital on their balance sheet to pay their people for a minimum of six months. We will also be engaging with them in the coming weeks, as we cede control of all aspects of management and operations to the local leadership team, in order to ensure continuity for any non-Russian clients who remain active in the market,” said Philippe Krakowsky, Chief Executive Officer, Interpublic Group in a LinkedIn post.