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Disappointing statement from Revolut's chief executive. Storonski speaks out on Ukraine

On Tuesday evening Nik Storonski, Revolut's founder and CEO, spoke out against the war in Ukraine but did not condemn Russia

Revolut's CEO Nik Storonski spoke publicly for the first time on the war in Ukraine. His extensive statement was published on Revolut's corporate blog. In it, he asserts that only a dozen or so years ago it would have been unthinkable for there to be a war between Russia and Ukraine. “I know this because, when Vladyslav and I founded Revolut in London, it did not matter where we came from. It felt like we were two brothers with a purpose and a big vision. And today, it still does”, he writes about his Ukrainian partner Vladyka Yatsenko. And he adds that today he is a British citizen, but his father is Ukrainian and has relatives and friends there for whom he cares.

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Storonski also writes that he hoped to the end for a diplomatic solution, that he took measures to protect the company's employees in Ukraine, and that he delayed speaking publicly about the war because he had to consider the safety of his colleagues in Russia, who "done nothing wrong; they have simply helped build Revolut, supporting their own families through their hard work, just like their colleagues in Ukraine (or London or New York or Sydney or Mumbai)".

“However I would like to make clear, publicly, what I’ve felt privately from day one: war is never the answer. This war is wrong and totally abhorrent. I am horrified and appalled at its impact, and I add my voice to those around the world calling for an immediate end to the fighting, and a commitment to diplomatic solutions. Not one more person should die in this needless conflict”, concludes Storonski.

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Revolut's chief executive also announced that he will double every donation up to £1.5m made by Revolut users to help Ukraine through the fintech app.

However, Storonski's statement is disappointing. Among the words about the horror of war, a simple condemnation of the Russian attack on an independent country was missing. The CEO of Revolut prefers to use euphemisms, and reading his letter, I get the impression that he is being relativistic. If we knew nothing about the ongoing horror beyond our eastern border, after reading Storonski's statement we would not be able to tell who invaded whom and why.

Revolut's chief stands in solidarity with his Ukrainian associate Vlad Yatsenko, but their attitudes are different. Jacenko does not mince words in social media, calling Putin a monster and a liar. He compares his propaganda to the stories of Hitler, "who lied to the Germans in a similar way almost 100 years ago". Storonski says the war is bad, that it is unnecessary, but he explicitly avoids saying who is the perpetrator and who is the victim. He waited too long to speak out on this issue. When he finally did, he failed to put the things straight. Revolut's international community of users will surely notice this.


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