Finnish fast food chain Hesburger has announced that the majority of its outlets in Russia and Belarus are now closed, with the remainder expected to end operations by Sunday.
The company said earlier this month that it planned to close all of its restaurants in both countries by the end of April, following criticism that the Turku-based firm's plan for pulling out of Russia and Belarus was too slow.
At the beginning of 2021, Hesburger had 39 restaurants in Russia — half of which were owned by franchisees — as well as four outlets in Belarus.
"The leases have been terminated at locations owned by Hesburger. Local franchise holders have also been informed that the use of the Hesburger trademark must cease immediately," the company said in a press release.
Hesburger's statement added that the company has also notified Google of the restaurant closures, as the Google Maps app appears to show that some of the outlets are still operating. Data for restaurants in Russia and Belarus have been removed from Hesburger's own app.
"We hope that Google's information will be updated as soon as possible," Hesburger CEO Kari Salmela said.
The company added that it has invested 15 million euros in its Russian operations since opening the first Hesburger outlet there in 2010.