McKinsey Bans Moscow Staff From Attending Pro-Navalny Protest

The Moscow office of leading U.S. consultancy McKinsey & Company banned its staff from attending an unauthorized protest in the capital in support of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny Saturday and warned them against voicing online support, according to an email sent to McKinsey personnel seen by The Moscow Times.

Russians nationwide took to the streets on Saturday in support of the opposition activist, who was jailed this week on his return from Germany to Russia.

The message, titled “Stay safe, stay neutral, enjoy weekend,”was sent to all employees in the office and shared with The Moscow Times by two McKinsey consultants on condition of anonymity.

“There is a call from some oppositionists for nationwide street demonstrations tomorrow that almost certainly will not be authorized. In line with policy, McKinsey employees must not support any political activity either publicly or privately. This ban does include posts in social media featuring your political views or your attitude to any action with a political flavour. This line of conduct is mandatory. Please make sure you stay away from public areas of gathering around 2pm tomorrow and please refrain entirely from making related posts in any media,” the message said. 

When asked for comment on the message by The Moscow Times, McKinsey replied, “McKinsey supports its employees’ rights to participate legally and in a personal capacity in civic and political activities across the countries we operate.  The recognition of these rights is unqualified.”

Saturday’s protest had not been approved by the Russian authorities.

According to McKinsey’s official Code of Professional Conduct presented online, “Colleagues must not present their personal political views in ways that could compromise the firm’s reputation for political neutrality.”

McKinsey has a long-standing relationship with Kremlin-linked companies, some of which are under Western government sanctions. In 2018, McKinsey was hired by VEB Bank, a bank that is fully owned by the Russian state and under U.S. sanctions. It has also consulted for Russian oil company Russneft.

McKinsey has previously been criticized by human rights activists for working for authoritarian states, including Saudi Arabia, Turkey and China.

(c) The Moscow Times


  1. This McKinsey Company sure have their snouts in the trough.

    “McKinsey’s business and policy support for authoritarian regimes came under scrutiny in December 2018, in the wake of a lavish company retreat in China held adjacent to Chinese government internment camps where thousands of Uyghurs were being detained without cause. In the preceding few years, McKinsey’s clients included Saudi Arabia’s absolute monarchy, Turkey’s autocratic leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan, ousted former President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych, and several Chinese and Russian companies under sanctions.”

    Liked by 5 people

  2. It seems they have changed their minds, was probably ordered from their HQ in NYC

    Liked by 5 people

  3. I have in the past had dealings with McKinsey in a professional capacity. The experience was very positive. They employ some of the brightest people in the world. Many of its consultants will have gone to Harvard or Oxford and have an MBA from somewhere like Stanford, which is the best in the world. For this reason they charge eye-watering fees. Their reports and recommendations are rigorously prepared and if acted upon, almost inevitably lead to success for the client.
    It is therefore highly regrettable that this wonderful expertise is made available to filthy, murderous regimes and their state enterprises. I wish they could be persuaded to withdraw from totalitarian countries altogether. All that quality they have to offer and no fucking integrity. Cunts.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I can see only one reason why this injunction would be beneficial. If the mafiosi stormtroopers should arrest one of them, they will blame the West for the protests.
    But, they will probably do so anyway.

    Liked by 2 people

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