Cisco Announces Plan to Leave Russia and Belarus

Cisco has announced plans to formally leave Russia and end its business activities in Russia and Belarus in response to the invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.

The network company first issued a statement on March 3, stating that it would cease all business activities in Russia and Belarus “for the foreseeable future.” On Thursday, the company released another statement, noting that it had continued to monitor the war in Ukraine “closely” and, as a result, had decided to “begin an orderly winding down of our business in Russia and Belarus.”

“Cisco remains committed to using all of its resources to help our employees, the institutions and people of Ukraine, and our customers and partners during this challenging time,” the statement said.

During an earnings call in April, Cisco’s CFO Scott Herren told analysts that Russia, Belarus and Ukraine combined have historically accounted for about 1% of the company’s total revenue.

However, he noted that the decision to close operations in both Russia and Belarus had a negative impact on sales, costing the company “about $200 million or two percentage points of growth.”

What are other companies doing?

In the days following Russia’s first invasion, a long list of Western technology companies suspending operations in Russia began to grow.

SAP and Oracle were two of the first tech organizations to publicly withdraw from the country after Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov publicly posted letters addressing both companies on Twitter.

In early March, Microsoft also announced that it would suspend new sales of Microsoft products in Russia, “in accordance with government sanctions decisions.”

However, at that time, the statement was criticized by Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov, who said simply suspending sales in Russia did not go far enough and the company should block access to its products.

This week, Russian news agency TASS reported that attempts to install Windows 10 and Windows 11 in Russia were blocked. Microsoft has not yet commented on whether this is a technical glitch or part of the company’s plan to further withdraw from Russia.

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on top topics.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.