Following the lead of fellow automakers Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar Land Rover, Volvo, and more, Ford announced this evening that it would be suspending its operations in Russia.
Ford CEO Jim Farley broke the news in a tweet, citing a deep concern about the invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces on February 24, and offering an act of support for the Ukrainian people. Farley’s tweet included a longer press release, which indicates that the Ford Fund will donate $100,000 to the Global Giving Ukraine Relief Fund at an unspecified date and time.
The donation is in an effort to provide humanitarian aid and assistance to displaced Ukrainian nationals and families affected by the dramatic events of the past week. The full tweet and press release follow.
While the action and donation from Ford are symbolically important to the cause of the Ukrainian people and Ukrainian nationals employed by the automaker, the business side ramifications of this action are minimal.
For the last decade, a joint venture between Ford and the Russian company Sollers has seen a variety of production come and go. A project that started by bringing production of the Focus and Mondeo lines to Russian soil, has in recent years slowed to a trickle. In 2019 Ford announced a restructuring of the JV that would end production of passenger vehicles.
The GlobalGiving Ukraine Relief Fund has collected some $3.1M in donations as of this writing. The Ford Fund and GlobalGiving have partnered on other charitable projects in years past.