All Domino's Pizza Stores Are Officially Closing Down In Russia

Russia isn't exactly known for its pizza, but its pie pickings are about to become even slimmer. That's because the international conglomerate Domino's announced that all of its 142 locations in the country will be shut down. Domino's announced in December of 2022 that it was pulling back from any future investments in the country. But the situation for businesses in Russia hasn't improved, nor does the company expect them to, as it plans to fully liquidate its operations there.

Officials from DP Eurasia, which owns the franchise rights in Russia, noted in a statement that the closing is tied to bankruptcy, which it is filing for Domino's Russian extension, DPRussia. The statement says the decision for a wholesale shuttering of Russian-run stores stems from financial difficulties related to its operation spurred by the war in the region. While the full scope of the Russian bankruptcy remains unknown, for comparison, Reuters reported that DP Eurasia's branch in Turkey has settled a debt of more than $5 million.

"With the increasingly challenging environment, DPRussia's immediate holding company is now compelled to take this step, which will bring about the termination of the attempted sale process of DPRussia as a going concern and, inevitably, the group's presence in Russia," DP Eurasia noted in a statement. Although reports of Domino's future in Russia may have just been announced, the pizzeria's fate follows a pattern already seen in the country. It's a trend that bodes poorly for the future of Western businesses — and chain eateries — in Russia. 

All 142 Domino's Pizza chains are leaving Russia due to operating challenges

Most regard the conflict as a war of choice, and this opportunism on Russia's part has led public sentiment toward the country to nosedive, including businesses. In 2022, both Mcdonald's and Starbucks left Russia in public protest of the war in Ukraine. Many local Russian companies took over those locations and resumed store operations, often copycatting the exiting brand's food under new names. But to date, roughly 1,000 foreign companies have terminated or paused operations in Russia since the onset of the war. 

Domino's decision to leave Russia, however, resulted from a failure to sell the business last year. In an evaluation released by DP Eurasia in 2022, the Russian arm of its business was classified as "discontinued operations." Russia's invasion of Ukraine has made business increasingly difficult, and though the official news of its departure just broke, Domino's has long been expected to withdraw. Last December, Domino's was in talks to leave Russia, and now those talks are resulting in action. In addition to Domino's domestic struggles with delivery services, the latest news adds to the difficulties the pizza brand is currently facing.