Skip to content

Thirty Years After My Father Helped Bring McDonald's to Russia, It's Quitting the Country

He was one of dozens of managers who brought the golden arches to Pushkin Square

Video player cover image
McDonald's to Exit All Business in Russia

There is a picture of me and a monkey from sometime in 1990, sitting in front of the first McDonald’s ever opened in Russia. Over my shoulder, you can see the metal barricades that had to be erected in the restaurant’s first months to control the tens of thousands of people who lined up for a Big Mac and fries.

On Monday, McDonald’s Corp. said it will exit Russia after more than 30 years of operation in the country. The fast-food chain was one of the first Western brands to set up shop in Russia, just before the fall of the Soviet Union.