Procter & Gamble stops marketing, curtails sales in Russia

P&G already had suspended operations in Ukraine since the beginning of the war last month.

Procter & Gamble stops marketing, curtails sales in Russia

Procter & Gamble Co. is suspending marketing and capital investment in Russia and curtailing some product offerings there, Chairman-CEO Jon Moeller said in a letter to employees and blog post on Monday. The company also has suspended operations in Ukraine and put together a multi-million-dollar package of humanitarian relief for refugees.

P&G is “suspending all media, advertising and promotional activity” in Russia and “significantly reducing our product portfolio to focus on basic health, hygiene and personal care items needed by the many Russian families who depend on them in their daily lives. As we proceed with the reduced scale of our Russian operations, we will continue to adjust as necessary,” Moeller said.

P&G is the world's largest advertiser, according to the latest Ad Age Datacenter rankings.

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P&G executives had previously told analysts that Russia and Ukraine combined account for 2% of sales, or around $1.6 billion of $78 billion globally, and 1% of profits, or around $140 million, according to people familiar with the matter. That’s down considerably from more than a decade ago, when Russia made up as much as 4% of sales for P&G, which was among the first U.S. companies to enter the market in the 1980s.

Stopping sales to Russia is overwhelmingly popular with U.S. consumers, according to a survey last week by CivicScience with 3,500 respondents, which found 71% strongly agree and another 10% somewhat agree that companies should stop selling products or services there.

Read the latest news on industry responses to the Ukraine war.

P&G already had suspended operations in Ukraine since the beginning of the war last month to protect people, Moeller said. And the company is providing evacuation assistance, financial and logistical support, food, shelter and essential products, he said, with many “P&Gers in Central Europe and around the world opening their homes to welcome their Ukrainian colleagues.”

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Moeller said P&G also had sent a “multi-million-dollar” relief package of cash and P&G products, including diapers, feminine care and other essentials to refugee families via the International Federation of Red Cross and Crescent Societies and other relief organizations and is expanding these efforts through an employee matching gift program.