Yandex and Sberbank plot joint venture for e-commerce
Russia’s tech heavyweight Yandex and the country’s largest bank, Sberbank, are planning a joint venture to “boost e-commerce development”. The new venture will be based on the Yandex.Market platform.
The combination of the technological capabilities of Yandex and the infrastructure and technologies of Sberbank will result in the creation of “a leading e-commerce system”, the two companies say.
Furthermore, Sberbank intends to invest RUB 30 billion ($500 million) in Yandex.Market, bringing its value up to $1 billion (on a post-money basis, before taking into account any potential future synergies).
Sberbank and Yandex will own equal stakes in the joint venture. Up to 10% of the company’s shares will be allocated for an equity incentive pool for Yandex.Market management and employees.
Yandex.Market will continue to operate under the existing management team, with Maxim Grishakov as CEO and member of the board. There will also be another three representatives from Yandex on the board, and three from Sberbank.
Yandex.Market is already one of the largest players in Russia’s e-commerce market, with over $1.7 billion gross merchandise volume (GMV) in 2016. It has a monthly audience of over 20 million users, providing them access to over 20,000 domestic and international merchants and 150 million product offerings.
Grishakov says the partnership will enable the company introduce new services, such as consumer lending.
The joint venture is still subject to further negotiations, due diligence completion and regulatory approvals. The parties anticipate that the transaction will close by the end of 2017, although no assurances are given that the transaction will ultimately close.
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