The Belarusian publisher Wargaming leaves Russia and Belarus. Why the company chose this is unknown. Wargaming did not name a specific reason for the departure, but it is presumably related to the war in Ukraine.
“Over the past few weeks, Wargaming has conducted a strategic review of its global operations. The company has decided to no longer own or operate businesses in Russia and Belarus and will leave both countries,” Wargaming said in a LinkedIn statement. The main office of the publisher is located in Cyprus.
Wargaming writes that since March 31, it has been in the process of transferring the live service of its games in Russia and Belarus to Lesta Studio, which was previously part of Wargaming and is located in the Russian city of St. Petersburg. These include World of Tanks and World of Warships. Wargaming is also closing its studio in the Belarusian capital Minsk.
The publisher says it does not benefit from the transfer and even expects to suffer ” large losses as a result of the decision.” During the transition period, the games will remain available in Russia and Belarus. There they are operated by Lesta Studio. Exactly how long the transfer process will take is not clear.
Wargaming has not said why it is leaving Russia and Belarus, but it seems that the war in Ukraine is playing a role. Last month, the publisher fired World of Tanks director Sergey Burkatovskiy for supporting the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Wargaming has a studio in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. The publisher announced at the time that it would do its best to support the more than 550 employees from Ukraine in their flight from the country.