Wargaming leaves Russia and Belarus
On April 4, 2022, Wargaming announced that it is leaving the markets of Russia and Belarus and closing its Minsk office, as stated in the company’s Facebook post. As per AIN.Capital data, the company has made this decision due to the Russian aggression against Ukraine, but it does not comment on this.
According to the company’s announcement, over the past weeks, Wargaming has been conducting a strategic review of business operations worldwide. The company has decided it will not own or operate any businesses in Russia and Belarus and will leave both countries.
On March 31, 2022, the company transferred its gaming business in Russia and Belarus to the local management of Lesta Studio, which is no longer affiliated with Wargaming.
“The company will not profit from this process either today or going forward. Much to the contrary, we expect to suffer substantial losses as a direct result of this decision. We will be completing the operational transition with all due speed while remaining in full compliance with all laws and ensuring the ongoing safety and support of our employees. During the transition period, the live products will remain available in Russia and Belarus and will be operated by the new owner,” reads the company’s statement.
Wargaming has also started the process of closure of its studio in Minsk, Belarus. It was the first office and former headquarters of the company, from which its history began.
About the company
Wargaming Group Limited (alsWargaming Group Limited (also known as Wargaming.net) is a formerly Belarusian video game company now headquartered in Nicosia, Cyprus. Wargaming is famous for its military-themed team-based games World of Tanks, World of Warships, and World of Warplanes. The main markets for those games were Post-Soviet states, primarily Russia and Belarus. So exiting those two countries will be painful for Wargaming.
The company condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine from the first days of the war. On February 26, 2022, Creative Director of Wargaming Sergey Burkatovskiy resigned from the company due to his support for the war. Following his resignation, Wargaming made the statement: “Sergey Burkatovskiy is no longer a Wargaming employee. His personal opinion does not reflect the company’s position in any way. Wargaming works hard to provide aid to 550+ employees and their families in Ukraine.”
Wargaming indeed has a team in Ukraine. Persha Studia in Kyiv, founded in 2000, was acquired by the company in 2011.