For some time now, Google has locked horns with the Russian government for failing to delete content that Moscow deems offensive and illegal. Following this standoff, Russia has reportedly seized Google’s bank account making it impossible to pay staff and vendors.
“The Russian authorities’ seizure of Google Russia’s bank account has made it untenable for our Russia office to function, including employing and paying Russia-based employees, paying suppliers and vendors, and meeting other financial obligations,” a Google spokesperson said, adding that “Google Russia has published a notice of its intention to file for bankruptcy.”
Google paused some of its services in Russia including ad sales following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. The company initially blocked state-backed media channels from advertising on YouTube and eventually blocked them from the platform.
The American tech giant has said that it had moved many of its staffers from Russia, although some of them had opted to stay. Russia is a significant market that rake in 1% of its revenue last year, or approximately $2.6 billion.
Google is not the only company that Moscow has descended on. Facebook and Instagram were banned in an attempt to control the information being shared about the war.
No timelines or a clear roadmap has been given over these developments.