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Yandex wins business from Google in Russian Market

Yandex, the Russian mega-portal has signed a partnership deal with Mail.ru, one of the largest sites in the RuNet. Mail.ru provides email and portal services, much like Hotmail.com, and currently has a 5.7% stake in the Russian search market. Google had been providing the search facilities on this popular portal up to the end of 2005; a useful foot hold and venture into the Russian market. According to the independent statistics site, LiveInternet, Google currently has a 13.8% stake in the Russian market, compared to Yandex’s 51.9%.

Under the new partnership, termed a strategic alliance by both parties, Mail.ru will be given access to the search facilities of Yandex as well as joining them into their new contextual advertising program: Yandex Direct. Adverts from Yandex PPC customers will be displayed across the Mail.ru portals and network of holding sites.

This network of sites has an estimated monthly audience of more than 15 million users or 80% of the entire audience of the Russian Internet. Among the holdings of Mail.ru are:

  • Mail.Ru: the largest Russian Mail service
  • List.ru – the oldest directory of RuNet
  • Molotok.ru – popular Russian auction site
  • Torg.ru – the commercial portal

Mail.ru examined many potential partners, including several large Russian and foreign search systems, including their previous supplier [Google]. “The decision to select Yandex as our partner, with their systems of contextual advertisement and search, was accepted on the basis of the sum of many factors”, said Dmitry Grishin, Director-General of Mail.ru. “On the one hand there is the possibility to give our portal users a high quality search mechanism, adapted for the Russian users; On the other – due to this collaboration we plan to considerably increase our incomes from the sale of contextual advertisements ”

Mail.ru and its holdings represent a sizable asset in the RuNet. It must be quite a blow to Google to have their contract ended at Christmas. Far from merely competing with the big three SE’s, Yandex now seems to be pushing them out of the Russian market.

Source: Yandex News

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Nick Wilsdon

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3 Responses to Yandex wins business from Google in Russian Market

  1. […] to the position of Mail.ru as a destination site in Russia. It would appear that their decision to replace Google with Yandex as a source of contextual advertising in 2006 was more significant than traffic figures […]

  2. […] Mobile use is very particularly strong here in Russia, so this has been regarded as a good move on the part of Mail.ru. Although they are better known for their on-line email application (similar to Hotmail) Mail.ru’s web portal holds 4th place in the Russian search market with 6.5%. Their organic and contextual advert results have been provided by market leaders Yandex since late last year. […]

  3. […] deals of late, with Yandex in particular aggressively pushing their market share; for example the ousting of Google from their contract with Mail.ru last […]

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