September 29, 2011
Internet, September 29, 2011. Yandex (NASDAQ: YNDX) today announced a $15 million investment in the U.S. company blekko, creator of the search engine blekko.com.
Yandex’s investment was a part of a $30 million funding round, with Yandex as the lead investor. Also participating in the round were an Australian investor, MLC Private Equity, and existing investors U.S. Venture Partners, CMEA Capital and PivotNorth Capital. Along with the investment Yandex acquired a minority interest in the company. Yandex’s Chief Executive Officer will join blekko’s board of directors.
Blekko was founded in 2007, and in 2010 launched a new search engine that seeks to provide its users with only high-quality search results through the integration of search algorithms and user curation from web users. This method helps blekko provide safe and useful results.
“We love blekko and think it’s a great product – a quality search engine that organically combines search algorithms with expert opinions. We believe the outlook for this approach is strong and that the blekko team is poised to make it a success,” says Arkady Volozh.
Blekko was founded in 2007 to pursue innovations that would eliminate spam in search results. The company’s investors and strategic partners are Yandex (NASDAQ: YNDX), MLC Australia, U.S. Venture Partners, CMEA Capital, PivotNorth Capital, and leading angel investors including Ron Conway, Mike Maples, Jeff Clavier, and Marc Andreessen. Blekko has 27 employees, including former Google and Yahoo! search engineers.
Yandex (NASDAQ: YNDX) is the leading internet company in Russia, operating the country’s most popular search engine and the most visited website. Yandex also operates in Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belarus and Turkey. Yandex’s mission is to answer any question internet users may have.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These include statements regarding the prospects for Blekko’s search engine. Actual results may differ materially from the results predicted or implied by such statements, and our reported results should not be considered as an indication of future performance. The potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from the results predicted or implied by such statements include, among others, competitive pressures, changes in advertising patterns, changes in the legal and regulatory environment and technological developments, as well as those risks and uncertainties included under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in our Prospectus dated May 24, 2011, which is on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission and is available on our investor relations website at http://company.yandex.com/investor_relations/sec_filing.xml and on the SEC website at www.sec.gov. All information provided in this release is as of the date hereof, and Yandex undertakes no duty to update this information unless required by law.