The only major chain, then, that’s been silent on its continued operations in Russia is Marriott. They’ve talked about support for humanitarian efforts in Ukraine (paywall) but haven’t spoken to their investment in Russia.
- Surely they won’t be able to ‘stand alone’ continuing to develop in Russia, even if the moves competitors made are mostly symbolic.
- On the other hand perhaps their press release was delayed having to check first to make sure it didn’t list Taiwan as a country.
As one former Marriott executive said to me, “China is so important to them that they probably are considering how China views all this.” Marriott’s CEO of course has gone out of his way to flatter President Xi and handling of Covid-19 (obliteration of civil liberties) and Marriott even alerted the Chinese state to the presence of banned books in one of its hotels.
Marriott Moscow Grand Hotel, credit: Marriott
Cancelling all things Russia may have gone too far, like boycotts of Russian restaurants in the U.S. run by people who left Russia and now this.
Noted Putin sympathizer Pyotr Tchaikovsky (7 May 1840 – 6 November 1893)
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) March 9, 2022
Suspending new developments in Russia may be weak sauce, but it’s symbolism and Marriott will surely find its way to follow the symbolic masses.