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Yandex Suffers Q4 “Currency Headwinds,” Files Antitrust Complaint Against Google
Russian search engine grows but frustrated by Google control over Android.
Russian search engine and internet company Yandex is caught in the middle of Russia’s increasingly troubled relations with the West and the Russian currency’s precipitous decline.
This morning Yandex announced Q4 and full year financial results. The company saw Q4 revenues of 14.667 billion rubles (roughly $260 million) and full year revenues of 50.76 billion rubles (roughly $811 million). These figures represented growth of 21 percent and 29 percent respectively.
However the Q4 numbers were less than financial analysts were expecting. Interestingly Yandex is trading up this morning. Below are some additional highlights from the earnings release:
- Yandex had 59.7 percent of the Russian search market in Q4 (Google is roughly 32 percent)
- Search queries increased 9 percent vs. a year ago
- Yandex had 317,000 advertisers in Q4 (up 14 percent vs. 2013)
- Paid clicks increased 18 percent year over year
- Display advertising represented 8 percent of total revenue and grew 3 percent vs. 2013
Separately today Yandex reportedly filed an antitrust complaint in Russia over Google’s control over Android. The company is claiming Google has violated Russian competition law by requiring hardware OEMs that want access to Google Play to pre-install Google apps, including search, as “default” options for users. Yandex offers competing apps and services that it believes are harmed Google Play pre-install requirements.
The European Commission is currently seeking to conclude its multi-year antitrust investigation into Google’s PC search practices but there’s an Android investigation looming as well.
While it’s still unlikely that major changes will be imposed on Google’s PC search business in Europe, Android is potentially a different matter. It’s possible that regulators will disrupt Google’s ability to require its apps to be pre-installed as a condition of OEM access to Google Play.