Burberry joins exodus of luxury brands from Russia | Burberry group

Burberry has become the latest luxury brand to temporarily close its stores in Russia following Moscow’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine, following similar moves in recent days by Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Kering, Chanel and Prada.

The British fashion brand has three stores in the country, including one run by a franchisee and one in Moscow’s famous Red Square. It had already announced last week that it had halted deliveries to outlets but confirmed over the weekend that it was closing them for the time being.

Its decision to halt shipments to the country “due to operational difficulties” had already effectively shut down its online operations across the country. Burberry’s Russian site was still operational on Sunday evening, although international orders were likely to be further disrupted by Visa and Mastercard’s decision to withdraw from the country, leading to the blocking of the majority of foreign transactions.

Luxury brands have been exempted from the latest round of EU sanctions, meaning France and Italy can continue to export luxury goods to Russia without any legal repercussions.

However, doing business and fulfilling orders in the region has become increasingly difficult due to restrictions on payments and transactions.

On Friday, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, owner of brands such as Christian Dior, Givenchy and Bulgari, announced the closure of its 124 stores in Russia from Sunday, while Kering, owner of Gucci and Saint Laurent, confirmed that he would close his two shops in the countryside.

Chanel wrote on LinkedIn: “Given our increasing concerns about the current situation, the increasing uncertainty and the complexity to operate, Chanel has decided to temporarily suspend its activities in Russia.”

On Saturday, Prada confirmed he would follow suit, saying, “Our primary concern is for all colleagues and their families affected by the tragedy in Ukraine, and we will continue to support them.”

Giorgio Armani has tackled the war directly on the catwalk, with his fashion show in Milan last week held in silence in solidarity with Ukraine. However, the company has yet to confirm whether it has closed or suspended operations in Russia, in line with some of its rivals.

The growing operational and reputational risks associated with trading in the Russian market, as well as the danger that sanctions could spread, weighed heavily on stocks in the luxury sector.

Burberry shares have fallen more than 20% since Feb. 23, the day before Russia officially invaded Ukraine. Its stock price fell from £20.63 to £16.41.

LVMH shares lost about 13% of their value over the same period, falling from €6.65 (£5.50) to €5.77.

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