Air Liquide confirmed on Friday its intention to withdraw from Russia. The company says, “taking a responsible and orderly approach,” it has signed a memorandum of understanding with the local management team with the objective of transferring its activities in Russia in the framework of a management buyout (MBO).
The plans are subject to Russian regulatory approvals. “In parallel, as a consequence of the evolution of the geopolitical context, the activities of the group in Russia will no longer be consolidated starting 1 September 2022,” Air Liquide says.
Air Liquide says it employs about 720 people in Russia and that its sales in the country represent less than 1% of group revenue. The company posted group sales of €23.3 billion ($23.3 billion) in 2021.
Divesting via an MBO aims to ensure notably the continuity of oxygen supply to hospitals in Russia, the company says.
Air Liquide announced earlier that it would include an exceptional provision in its accounts in the first half of 2022 of €404 million on the company’s assets in Russia, which it says has no impact on cash.
by Ian Young
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