Everyone at KKCG and Allwyn Entertainment remains horrified by Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine. It is a senseless act of aggression that must be condemned in the strongest possible terms, and we are doing all we can to support the brave Ukrainians impacted by the barbarism of Vladimir Putin’s regime.
As Czech companies with tremendous pride in our heritage, the past week has been a bleak reminder of the hard-fought freedoms our country only recently reclaimed after spending years under the jackboot of Soviet oppression. Many of our employees – including us personally – were raised under communism and the totalitarian shadow of the Soviet Union. Despite being wrapped in this straightjacket, we long dreamt of living, working and raising our own families in a Czech Republic that valued freedom, openness and democracy.
That’s why we must now stand shoulder-to-shoulder in total solidarity with the Ukrainian people to protect the democratic values upon which our modern societies are built. We cannot and will not stand for the brutal imperialism that is once again rearing its ugly head on our doorstep.
Now is the time to listen to the people of Ukraine and do everything in our power to support them. Hundreds of thousands of people with nowhere to stay are fleeing eastern and central Ukraine for the Lviv area. Through the Komárek Family Foundation and our partner in Lviv, we are supporting efforts to prepare for the arrival of large numbers of refugees by ensuring these people have a safe and warm place to sleep and be fed. Trucks equipped with durable food, mattresses, sleeping bags, camping mats, hygiene products, and other supplies are currently arriving in the area. One of the Group's offices in Prague is already being converted to a safe centre for Ukrainian refugees.
Allwyn Entertainment’s lotteries are raising funds for Red Cross and employees are being encouraged to engage in volunteer work. Humanitarian and financial support will continue as long as it is needed.
We also believe that any friends of the Putin regime must also be excluded from our democratic societies. We’ve already seen many cultural and sporting institutions take important action, and through our continued support for Dvořákova Praha – Prague’s international music festival – we have also banned Kremlin linked musicians, including the composer Valerije Gergiev, a known supporter of Putin, from performing.
We recognise that these are only small acts in comparison to the thousands of brave Ukrainians who have taken up arms to defend their homeland and freedoms. However, we believe it’s the responsibility of anyone who values free and democratic values to play their part, no matter how big or small. It is critical that we all speak out.
Karel Komarek, KKCG
Robert Chvátal, Allwyn Entertainment