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Yandex acquires e-commerce recommendation service, Runa Capital celebrates first Russian exit

Yandex, the Russian search giant, has acquired a browser application developed by Metabar, a portfolio company of Runa Capital.

Dec 21, 2014
Yandex, the Russian search giant, has acquired a browser application developed by Metabar, a portfolio company of Runa Capital. The financial details of the deal have not been disclosed, but Runa reported that it "provided a multiple return on investment."

Christened "Sovetnik" (Russian for "advisor"), this browser extension helps users find the best offer for online shopping. Integrating the data of Yandex.Market, the marketplace of Yandex, Sovetnik analyzes the content of the page that an online shopper is viewing, and shows alternative sites where he or she can buy the same product with a better price or service conditions.

Sovetnik claims it is now used by more than two million people in Russia.

The technology, however, is not only applicable when shopping for goods. "We plan to use it to assist users in other services where the best offer is important for instance, airplane ticket search," said Alexander Feoktistov, Head of Yandex.Market Marketing.

When Runa Capital invested $1 million in Metabar in 2011, the startup was focusing on technologies that allowed websites to customize toolbars so that users can adhere to their features, news, and other applications.

The Metabar team invented Sovetnik in 2013 and decided to focus on this project and the business around it.

Under Yandex management, the application will be managed by the same team as before. The search engine company will continue to develop Sovetnik as a recommendation service.

Runa presents this deal as its first exit in Russia, following several completed ones abroad.