A New Peek At Russian Search Engine Yandex’s Finances

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Top Russian search site Yandex, which is frequently mentioned as a likely IPO candidate, is laying out a few data points about its business. The company says revenue last year jumped 43 percent to $410 million and that the total number of advertisers it served — 180,000 — increased by 40 percent. To put those numbers in some context, Google (NSDQ: GOOG), which is the second biggest player in the Russian search market, posted revenue of about $69 million in Russia in 2009. Yandex reported sales of $274 million that year.

The disclosure by Yandex comes as the company is reportedly preparing to go public either on the Nasdaq stock market or London Stock Exchange in the coming months. Yandex had hoped to raise as much as $2 billion by floating on the Nasdaq in 2008, but that offering was delayed.

The most recent valuation put on the company was $1.1 billion in September 2009, when three private equity firms purchased a nine percent stake for $100 million. Back then, its annual sales were about $300 million — a number that actually dropped 9 percent in 2009 because of weakness in the online advertising market.

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