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Russian internet company Yandex will pay $ 1 billion to buy Uber from joint ventures in food and grocery, logistics and autonomous management.
The cash agreement gives Yandex full control over Yandex.Eats, the fast delivery service of Yandex.Lavka and the logistics company Yandex.Delivery, as well as its separate division for autonomous vehicles, the company said on Tuesday.
The sale indicates Yandex, ie Russia’s response to Google looking for doubling the delivery of food and groceries after rapid growth during the closure of coronavirus. Yandex is also rapidly growing its online store and entertainment offerings.
Yandex, which had nearly $ 3 billion in cash and deposits at the end of the second quarter of 2021, is one of a number of Russian companies seeking to establish an ecosystem in China.
The idea is to take advantage of the huge amount of user and payment data from tech giants to offer users a variety of products within ‘superapps’. Yandex and Russia’s two largest e-commerce companies, Wildberries and Ozone, all bought small banks this year that they plan to use as platforms for expansion to financial services.
Russia’s state-owned Sberbank, meanwhile, has also invested heavily in Yandex’s biggest rival, Mail.ru, in a joint venture, including rival taxis and food apps Citymobil and Delivery Club, although the partnership on the rocks since last year after disagreements over its direction.
Yandex.Eats increased its revenue by 93% year-on-year to Rbs8.1 billion ($ 110 million) in the last quarter, although its losses tripled to Rbs3 billion in the same period.
The unit as a whole, led by one of the world’s least profitable driving apples, has adjusted earnings for interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of 1.5 billion.
The deal also gives Yandex an additional 4.5 percent stake in MLU, the joint venture it set up when it merged its taxi business with Uber in a $ 3.8 billion 2018 deal.
The Russian company will own 68 percent of the MLU, with an additional 3 percent for its employees.
Under the agreement, Yandex will also have a two-year call option to buy Uber’s remaining 29 percent stake in MLU for at least $ 1.8 billion, up to $ 2 billion by the end of the period. Yandex has also extended its rights to the Uber brand in Russia and a number of other countries until 2030.
The deal, which has already been approved by the boards of Yandex and Uber, is expected to close by the end of the year.