Yandex (// Russian: Яндекс) is a Russian multinational technology company specializing in Internet-related services and products. It is Russia’s biggest technology company. Yandex operates the largest search engine in Russia with about 65% market share in that country. It also develops a number of Internet-based services and products. Yandex ranked as the 4th largest search engine worldwide, based on information from Comscore.com, with more than 150 million searches per day as of April 2012, and more than 50.5 million visitors (all company's services) daily as of February 2013. The company's mission is to provide answers to any questions users have or think about (explicit or implicit). Yandex also has a very large presence in Kazakhstan and, until May 2017, in Ukraine, providing nearly a third of all search results in those markets and 43% of all search results in Belarus.
|Public company, Search engine|
|Traded as||NASDAQ: YNDX, MCX: YNDX|
(Yandex search launched by CompTek)|
2000 (Yandex company founded)
|Headquarters||ul. Lva Tolstogo, 16, Moscow, Russia, 119021|
|Russia, Turkey, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia|
|Arkady Volozh, CEO|
|Products||Alisa (virtual assistant)
Yandex Data Factory
|Revenue||₽75.9 billion (2016)|
|₽12.8 billion (2016)|
|₽14.1 billion (2016)|
|Total assets||₽114.108 billion (2016)|
|Total equity||₽28.95 billion (2011)|
Number of employees
|6,271 (December 2016)|
The Yandex.ru home page has been rated the most popular website in Russia. The web site also operates in Belarus, Kazakhstan and Turkey. Yandex Labs is a wholly owned division of Yandex located in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2014, Yandex announced plans to open a research and development office in Berlin, Germany.
It opened the first sales office outside the CIS countries in Lucerne, Switzerland in 2012 for its European advertising clients, and the second one in Shanghai, China in 2015 for Chinese companies that work on the Russian language market.
According to research studies conducted by TNS, FOM, and comScore, Yandex is the largest resource and largest search engine in the Russian Internet market, based on audience reach. Yandex currently has a market share of over 65% in Russia's search engine market by traffic, although the company itself suggested it had a market share in Russia of 55.4% in Quarter 4 of 2016.
Yandex' main competitors on the Russian market are Google, Mail.ru and Rambler. Yandex is therefore one of the national non-English-language search engines (with, among others, Naver, Seznam.cz and Baidu) that pose as significant competitors for Google in their respective countries.
Yandex's roots trace back to 1990, when Arkady Volozh and Arkady Borkovsky founded the company Arkadia, which developed MS-DOS software for use in patents and goods classification. Their software featured a full-text search with Russian morphology support. In 1993 Arkadia became a subdivision of Comptek International, another company founded by Volozh in 1989. In 1993–1996 the company continued developing its search technologies and released software for searching through the Bible and Russian classical literature.
In 1993 Arkady Volozh and Ilya Segalovich, friends since their school days and by then working together to develop search software, invented the word "Yandex" to describe their search technologies. The name initially stood for "Yet Another iNDEXer". The Russian word "Я" ("Ya") corresponds to the English personal pronoun "I", making "Яndex" a bilingual pun on "index". Another pun is based on the yin and yang contrast (Russian: инь – индекс, ян – яндекс).
The search engine yandex.ru was launched on September 23, 1997 and was publicly presented at the Softool exhibition in Moscow. Initially the search engine was developed by Comptek. In 2000 Yandex was incorporated as a standalone company by Arkady Volozh.
Yandex's revenue comes primarily from online advertisement. In 1998 Yandex launched contextual advertisement on its search engine. In 2001 it launched the Yandex.Direct advertisement network. Yandex LLC became profitable in November 2002. In 2004, Yandex sales increased to $17M, which was 10 times greater than the company's revenue just two years earlier. The net income of the company in 2004 constituted $7M. In June 2006, the weekly revenue of Yandex.Direct context ads system exceeded $1M. All of Yandex's accounting measures have been audited by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu since 1999.
In September 2005 Yandex opened an office in Ukraine and presented the Ukrainian portal, www.yandex.ua. In 2008 Yandex extended its presence in Ukraine by increasing bandwidth between Moscow datacenters and UA-IX in Ukraine five times. In 2007 Yandex introduced a customized search engine for Ukrainian users; Yandex also opened its development center in Kiev in May 2007. In 2009, all services of www.yandex.ua were localized for the Ukrainian market. In 2010, Yandex launched its "Poltava" search engine algorithm for Ukrainian users, based on Yandex's MatrixNet technology and ranking local resources higher for location-based queries.
In March 2007 Yandex acquired moikrug.ru, a Russian social network, to search and support professional and personal contacts. In June 2008 Yandex acquired SMI Link, a Russian road traffic monitoring agency, to merge it with Yandex.Maps services.
Yandex also founded Yandex Labs in 2008. The main objective of the company, located in the San Francisco Bay area, is to foster "innovation in search and advertising technology".
In August 2009 Yandex introduced a player of free legal music in its search results. A little over a year later Yandex launched the Yandex.Music service and significantly extended its music catalogue to 800,000 tracks from 58,000 performers.
In 2010 Yandex launched the Yandex.Start program to find startups and to work with them systematically. As a result of the program, Yandex purchased WebVisor's behavior analysis technology in December 2010. In January 2011 the next startup, single sign-in service Loginza, was acquired by Yandex.
In January 2011 Yandex introduced premium placement opportunity in its Business directory; advertisers' local small businesses will be highlighted on a map for relevant queries. It was announced that the potential audience of the product includes over 25 million users of Yandex's search engine and over 11.5 million of Yandex.Maps.
In spring 2011 Yandex raised $1.3 billion in an initial public offering on NASDAQ. It was the biggest U.S. IPO for a dotcom since Google Inc. went public in 2004. Among the largest investors in Yandex were Baring Vostok Capital Partners and Tiger Global Management. As part of a disclosure before the listing on NASDAQ, Yandex revealed that it had passed private customer information to the FSB, including that of users who had donated money via Yandex to an anti-corruption website set-up by Alexei Navalny. This disclosure was part of a warning from Yandex about the "legal and political risks" of investing in Russia.
In September 2011 Yandex launched a search engine and a range of other services in Turkey, at yandex.com.tr. The company also opened an office in Istanbul.
In June 2012 Yandex acquired share in Seismotech, Ltd. that provides services in the area of interpretative processing of seismic data and software development (Prime package), and provided its equipment and distributed computing technologies for processing of geological-geophysical data.
In March 2013 it was revealed that a motion movie production about the history of Yandex is in the works. In July 2013, Mail.Ru started placing Yandex.Direct ads on its search result pages. October 2013 Yandex acquired KinoPoisk, the biggest Russian movie search engine. Also in 2013, Yandex became the largest media property in Russia by generated revenue.
In June 2014 Yandex acquired the online auto classifieds portal Auto.ru
In the summer of 2017, within the framework of the joint project of the Bank of Russia and Yandex, a special check mark (a green circle with a tick and ‘Реестр ЦБ РФ’ (State MFO Register) text box) appeared in the search for Yandex system, informing the consumer that the company's financial services are offered on the marked website, which has the status of a microfinance organization.
In July 2017, Uber and Yandex NV are merging their ride-hailing businesses in Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus and Georgia. Uber will invest $225 million and take a 36.6 % stake in a new, yet-to-be named venture. Yandex will invest $100 million and own 59.3 % of the new company.
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