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Bacardi labelled "international war sponsor" as Russian business operations continue

The National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) has regarded Bermudian company Bacardi in a list of “international war sponsors” after continuing business operations in Russia. The NACP is a central executive body responsible for developing anti-corruption policies and preventing corruption in Ukraine. It stated that Bacardi has continued business operations in the Russian Federation and is actively seeking employees there. With less competition in the Russian alcohol market, data on the Federal Tax Service of the Russian Federation showed that Bacardi Russia’s revenue in 2022 increased by 8.5% to RUB 32.6 billion (approx. $12.88 billion), and the net profit to RUB 4.7 billion (approx. $1.85 billion). The spike represents 206.5% more than in 2021. Consequently, the company paid Russia more than $12 million in income tax, according to the statement. Bacardi owns more than 200 trademarks, with brands such as Baron Otard, D’USSÉ, Bombay, Bacardi, Cazadores and Grey Goose. After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Bacardi announced it would stop exporting to Russia and stop investing in advertising, but this part later disappeared from the company’s official statement, according to the NACP. In a statement on its website, Bacardi says that its “priority is to ensure the safety and wellbeing” of its people, “especially those directly affected by the ongoing war in Ukraine”. It says in the statement that it is supporting Ukraine with the resources and services necessary. However, the NACP says that Bacardi continued to supply its products to the Russian Federation for millions of dollars. The Russian division of the Bacardi Rus company is said to have imported goods worth $169 million during the year of the war in Ukraine, resulting in significant taxes paid to the budget of Russia. FoodBev has reached out to Bacardi for comment.

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