Wargaming, the developer behind World of Tanks and World of Warships, will no longer “own or operate any businesses in Russia and Belarus” following a strategic internal review.
This decision was announced earlier today via Wargaming’s LinkedIn page, where the studio, which was originally founded in Minsk, Belarus back in August 1998, confirmed it has already relocated its live games business out of Russia and Belarus.
“Effective March 31 the company transferred its live games business in Russia and Belarus to local management of Lesta Studio that is no longer affiliated with Wargaming,” Wargaming said. “The company will not profit from this process either today or going forward. Much to the contrary we expect to suffer substantial losses as a direct result of this decision.”
Lesta Studio was previously called Wargaming Saint Petersburg, though it became unaffiliated with Wargaming in April 2022. That studio will maintain Wargaming’s live games in Russia and Belarus.
The company is now working to complete operational transitions as quickly as possible while “remaining in full compliance with all laws and ensuring the ongoing safety and support of our employees.”
As the company begins this full transition out of Russia and Belarus, Wargaming has already started the process of closing its studio in Minsk.
“We will be providing as much severance and support as possible to our employees affected by the change,” Wargaming said. “Despite the magnitude of this decision, we as a company are confident in the future of our business and are committed to delivering quality games to our players.”
This is just the latest move from the company to distance itself from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Back in February, Wargaming fired World of Tanks creative director Sergey Burkatovskiy after he publicly supported Russia’s actions. Now, the company joins dozens of other gaming companies and groups that have changed their business practices to limit operations or availability in Russia.