Miro, a US decacorn born in Russia, commits €1 million to help Ukraine and closes Russian office

In a strong symbol of the crash of Russia’s technology sector, Miro, a US-based decacorn created in Russia eleven years ago, announced last week it was closing its office and stopping sales in its native country. 

“We are devastated by the escalating war and human tragedy in Ukraine. We continue to call for a swift end to the war and a return to peace and we condemn the ongoing acts of violence,” the company stated

In the weeks preceding these tragic events, Miro had “worked through various plans to ensure that our employees, customers, and business would be supported and safe in the event of conflict in Ukraine – hoping that they would never have to be implemented.” 

As the conflict nevertheless started, the company set up a special task force “to ensure the safety and security of our Ukrainian employees and their communities.” In addition, Miro waived all fees for its Ukrainian customers “until at least August 2022,” and took measures to “make it as easy as possible for them to access Miro.”

Combining employee and corporate donations, Miro has “committed and gathered more than ​​€1 million” to support humanitarian organizations working in Ukraine. 

Complying with “all current and future sanctions

Going further, Miro’s board of directors decided the company couldn’t “continue to operate in Russia in the same way.” The company’s office in Russia will be closed, with no longer employees locates in the country. 

Even though Miro did not sell directly in Russia and Belarus, the company “paused” its commercial activities in these countries through local resellers. 

Avoiding to mention its Russian roots, Miro insisted on its “global dimension:” 

“Miro is a US-based corporation, registered in Delaware, with co-headquarters in San Francisco and Amsterdam. All of our executives, our employees, and operations are located within the US, EU, and APAC. Miro hosts data and operates only within the EU and US on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform. No services are run from outside of the EU- or US-based data centers.”

The company said it “complies and will comply” with all current and future sanctions. In particular, it is “suspending licenses for any customer on international sanctions lists.” However, Miro “continues [its] responsibility to support [its] individual users and customers in Russia and Belarus.”

Miro, the brainchild of Andrey Khusid and Oleg Shardin, was born in 2011 in Perm, a city located some 1,150 km east from Moscow. The startup — known at that time as RealtimeBoard — quickly got recognition from several domestic industry contests, as reported by East-West Digital News. 

Today Miro stands as a global market leader in corporate visual collaboration tools. Allowing distributed teams to “create, collaborate, and centralize communication for all cross-functional team work,” its solution is touted as “an entire toolkit for user story or customer journey maps, wireframing, roadmap or sprint planning, retros, and more.”

In January 2022, the company announced a $400 million Series C round. The deal brought the company to a $17.5 billion post-money valuation.

Topics: International, News, Startups
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