Guardian Glass sold its Russian operations, which included two glass factories employing around 600 people. The buyer is a private company in the construction sector. Dave Robertson, president and chief operating officer of Koch Industries, parent company of Guardian Glass, says the exit strategy maintains the company’s commitment to employee safety while preventing the Russian government from gaining control and to benefit from operations.
Koch Industries called for both plants to close in April 2022, as the invasion of Ukraine made continued operations “unsustainable”. The company condemned Russia’s “actions and aggression” at the time and continues to do so.
However, employee safety was an ongoing concern. Robertson wrote that the floating operations would remain open lest the Russian government take over and profit from the manufacturing facilities.
The company cited the Wall Street Journal in making its decision, as the publication reportedly wrote that the Russian government could use the manufacturing facilities for its benefit. At the same time, Robertson said the company will work with its local management team to find an exit strategy that keeps employee safety in mind.
“To date, Guardian has done this responsibly and safely – having sold its Russian business to Vladimir Alexandrovich Voronin, chairman of FSK Group, a private construction company,” Robertson announced this week. “This is an outcome facilitated and supported by plant employees and in compliance with all applicable sanctions, laws and regulations.”
Koch Industries was the only US-based glass company to have float operations in Russia.