Universal Music Group has closed its offices in Russia and suspended operations in the country.
It follows the Russian invasion of Ukraine last month, which has led to wide-ranging economic sanctions and boycotts by multinational companies in protest at the military action.
Music giants including Spotify and Live Nation moved to pause their business dealings in Russia last week, while TikTok has restricted its service in the country. PRS For Music today suspended its dealings with Russian collection society RAO.
Now UMG - the world’s largest music company - has confirmed that it will suspend its business in Russia.
“Effective immediately, we are suspending all operations in Russia and closing our offices there,” said a statement. “We urge an end to the violence in Ukraine as soon as possible. We are adhering to international sanctions and, along with our employees and artists, have been working with groups from a range of countries (including the US, UK, Poland, Slovakia, Germany, Czech Republic and Hungary) to support humanitarian relief efforts to bring urgent aid to refugees in the region.”
Music Week understands that Sony Music is set to suspends its operations in Russia within the next 24-48 hours.
All the major labels and other music companies have donated to humanitarian efforts for Ukraine.
According to IFPI’s 2021 Global Music Report, Russia is the 16th biggest international music market and has increased substantially in recent years. It is now at $200 million annually in trade revenue.