The Milan-based Campari Group, which owns the Italian drink brand Aperol, has filed a lawsuit in Russia to demand a stop to Aperol imports, independent Russian media outlet Meduza reported on Oct. 5.
The lawsuit was filed in Rostov against the local distributor Master-Trade, which Campari Group believes imports and sells Aperol without permission.
Meduza cited information provided to the Russian business newspaper Kommersant, which suggests Campari may not have responded to requests from the Russian customs service as to whether the goods have permission to be imported.
If the owner of the brand does not answer the service, "the goods are passed through" customs anyway and allowed into the country.
A hearing for the case is scheduled for October 30, Meduza reported.
In April 2022, Campari Group said it had "stopped all investments" in Russia, including advertising and promotions, and "reduced the business to the bare minimum necessary to pay the salaries of our colleagues."
"We are monitoring the situation closely and are open to reconsider our position accordingly," Campari said.
However, Campari's continued presence in Russia led some Ukrainian bar owners to boycott the group's brands and remove drinks like Aperol Spritz from their menu over the summer of 2023.
According to the Kyiv School of Economic's #LeaveRussia campaign, the revenue volumes of the Campari Group increased in 2022 compared to the 2021 level.