Russia’s Yandex on the up and up: 42% profit increase in 2012

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Things are looking good for Russian search and internet services giant Yandex. The company, which controls around 60% of Russia’s search market, posted some seriously solid financial results for 2012.

Revenues for the year were US$947.1-million, up 44% year-on-year while profits were up 42% to US$270.7-million for the year. While that’s not quite not quite as impressive as the growth it showed from 2010 to 2011, its worth bearing in mind that Yandex spent a lot of time in 2012 expanding into other markets and launching a host of new products.

This year meanwhile, the company launched the iOS app Wonder in the US — its first foray into the country — although it had to withdraw that following issues with Facebook over its API usage.

“Yandex delivered strong fourth quarter and full year 2012 results with robust revenue growth, solid search share and a continuing stream of important innovations,” said Arkady Volozh, Chief Executive Officer of Yandex. “In Q4, we launched key products aimed at improving the user experience, including new mobile apps, personalized search and our Yandex.Browser, which has already captured a considerable share of the Russian browser market. I am also proud to report that, for the first time ever, we became the fourth largest search engine in the world, according to comScore.”

Yandex definitely knows Russia well. One of its biggest advantages for Russian-language users is that it has the ability to recognize the Russian inflection in search queries. Speaking to people who’ve been involved in the Russian tech scene however, its obvious that the company is viewed as being incredibly innovative.

If it can make take that approach to innovation global, then it could easily make the leap from a company that brings in close to a billion dollars a year to one that brings in many billions of dollars a year.

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