The founder of the major Russian Internet company Yandex, Arkady Volozh, could agree to a new shareholder and management structure of the company in exchange for permission from the Kremlin to independently develop some Yandex assets abroad, The Bell reported, citing unnamed sources.
Ben Intelli News She covered in detail how she left the market guessing after classifying Voloz into the sixth package of EU sanctions due to Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine.
Previous reports had claimed that Yandex could be divided into a domestic unit that would operate in the heavily sanctioned economy and a renamed international unit run by the company’s former executives. But so far the company appears to be maintaining strong operating and financial results.
A new deal is now reportedly being negotiated between Voloz and the Kremlin, mediated by veteran policymaker, former Finance Minister and Audit Chamber head Alexei Kudrin, The Bell reports.
In 2019, Fuloz has already survived attempts to take over the state and concluded a corporate governance deal with the Kremlin. But over time, it was reported that there was no unity in his team.
Previous reports claimed that the Russian military invasion of Ukraine divided the Voloz management team into “remainers” and “entrants”. – Those who support maintaining operations in Russia and those who advocate moving abroad. Voloz himself has been living in Israel for several years now, and a few directors have joined him this year.
In May, Yandex was forced to deny unofficial reports that Voloz was negotiating with the Israeli authorities to accept a large number of IT professionals in Israel with the possibility of opening a headquarters in Tel Aviv.
Reportedly, the negotiations involved splitting development teams, transferring intellectual property and, most importantly, who would control Russia’s Yandex in the future. Projects that can be woven include drones, cloud services, and the Yandex.Practicum educational project.
Two of his sources told The Bell that granting Voloz the rights to develop some Yandex projects overseas would cost him control of the rest of the business. One of the options is to leave the control of the “Russian” Yandex company to local senior management. Kudrin himself could reportedly join Yandex’s board of directors, management, or even its shareholders.
Voloz has already announced his resignation from all positions in Yandex and its board of directors after he was sanctioned by the European Union. The Volozh family trust has an economic stake of 8.6% and 45.3% in Yandex and is not a controlling shareholder in the company. Yandex previously saw a series of high-profile resignations that followed the punishment of Yandex Executive Vice President Tigran Khudaverdyan.
Yandex has been a leading developer in Russia of artificial intelligence and driver technologies. Prior to the Russian military invasion of Ukraine, Yandex was hailed as the global technology runner-up, looking to promote monetization of its technologies on the one hand and leverage these technologies to support its international expansion on the other.
Credit rating agency Fitch has downgraded Yandex and other major Russian TMT companies to junk B, noting that “the rating actions reflect the severe shock to Russia’s operating environment and weaken financial resilience, tracking the agency’s downgrade of Russia’s sovereign ratings.” Previously traded on Nasdaq, Yandex announced the hypothetical action initiated by its bondholders.
In 2021, Yandex for the fifth year in a row topped the list of the most valuable technology and Internet companies with a value of $23 billion. Aside from e-commerce, its investment case has previously been based on developments in transportation, financial technology and food technology, with a well-developed ecosystem seen as a major advantage.
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