Analysis: ‘Russia Is Half of Our Business.’ Or It Was.
The shoes, 600 pairs in all, lay untouched inside an Italian warehouse: magenta sandals, décolleté heels and gold ballerina flats, destined for Russian boutiques but stuck in a limbo of sanctions and economic upheaval from Russia’s war in Ukraine.
Sergio Amaranti, the Italian shoe company saddled with the mountain of unpaid merchandise, is among thousands of European businesses grappling with a widening blowback from the conflict.
“It’s scary,” said Moira Amaranti, who manages the company founded by her father and uncle. She said she worried that the sudden financial loss could destabilize the 47-year-old firm, which sustains her 20 longtime workers and their families. “Russia is half of our business,” she said. “And now we have a problem.”
Russia’s monthlong war on Ukraine is lashing Europe’s economic rebound from the Covid-19 pandemic, threatening its job-rich recovery. Manufacturers and retailers that were benefiting from renewed growth are adjusting to wild swings in business conditions that have injected fresh uncertainty into economic decision-making.
Photo courtesy of Eden, Janine and Jim.