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Updated on June 27, 2022 1:18 am

Russian Tech Business Faces ‘Mind Drain’ as Staff Flee


“We don’t have sufficient high quality residences for extremely educated folks with excessive salaries and excessive requirements,” mentioned Aram Shahbandarian, a former Google worker primarily based in Yerevan who helps many Russians transfer to town. “Yerevan is cracking.”

Vahan Kerobyan, Armenia’s economic system minister, mentioned in an interview that as a rustic with a strategic relationship with Russia, it was not advertising itself as making an attempt to tug corporations out of Russia, however that if corporations determined to maneuver, it will work to accommodate them.

“The Armenian tech group is offering help to their Russian buddies, and the federal government could be very a lot frightened about giving Russian corporations a pleasant place that isn’t too costly the place they’ll work,” he mentioned. Mr. Kerobyan estimated that 43,000 folks had moved from Russia to Armenia, half of whom maintain Russian passports and half Armenian passports.

Miro, a U.S. software program firm, chartered flights to Yerevan for its Russian staff and moved them into two motels within the coronary heart of town, Mr. Kerobyan mentioned. X-tensive, a software program improvement firm in Russia, has additionally moved its staff to the Armenian metropolis as a result of its main consumer, ServiceTitan, has an workplace there, he mentioned.

Miro has mentioned publicly that it was transferring its staff out of Russia. X-tensive didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Lots of these staff could ultimately transfer on to different locations as a result of visa restrictions require them to go away their present dwelling after a sure variety of days. Many are not sure the place they could go. Others are planning strikes to up-and-coming tech hubs farther away, corresponding to Dubai and Lisbon.

Artem Taganov, founder and chief govt of a Russian start-up known as HintEd, mentioned he knew about 70 founders of Russian corporations who, like him, had fled to Armenia. If entrepreneurs keep in Russia, he mentioned, their corporations can serve solely the native market.

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