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An exciting future for Uber and Yandex

An exciting future for Uber and Yandexā€¯

The most recent example of this is that on Thursday Uber announced that it formed a partnership with Russian Internet Yandex operator of a search giant and Yandex the ride-hailing service known as Yandex-Taxi.

Uber will be merging with Yandex in six different countries, including Russia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Georgia. Uber has agreed to invest $225m in the venture, but Yandex will retain a majority stake of 59.3 per cent, and has invested $100m of its own. Employees will own 4.1 percent. Tigran Khudaverdyan, head of Yandex.Taxi in Russian Federation, will become CEO of the combined enterprise, Uber and Yandex said.

The deal is similar to Uber's approach in China previous year.

According to a press release, the company's head of business in the region, Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, said Uber is investing $225 million in the new company on top of the $170 million the company already put into the region. UberEats food delivery will be expanded, and the "unique" joint venture situation won't affect operations in other countries, according to a company blog post to Uber employees.

The deal comes not long after Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, who helped found the app-based vehicle service in 2009, resigned amidst investor pressure. The U.S. firm in return got a 17.5% stake in Didi, which at that time was valued at $35 billion.

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Shares in Russia's largest internet company leapt nearly 20 percent as investors bet the deal could accelerate the move of Yandex's taxi business into profitability. But it offers one vision for how companies like Uber can escape the vicious cycle of competing to subsidize rides in a money-losing race to the bottom.

Uber says that for the foreseeable future, both the Uber and Yandex rider apps will continue to operate as normal.

More than 35 million rides were performed in June between the two operations, collecting more than $130m in gross bookings. The company also will stretch into Armenia and Georgia, where Uber does not now operate.

The difference between the Didi deal and the Yandex deal, however, is that there are no Uber properties that are continuing to operate in China. The new company will be called "NewCo" and operate in 127 cities. Driver apps will be integrated after the transaction closes.



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