Woori BMO Group Says Yandex Prices IPO At More Than Planned $25 Per Share, Raises $1.3 Billion

Press Release

24 May, 2011 /Woori BMO Group/ According to analysts at the wealth management firm Woori BMO Group, Yandex, one of Russia’s largest Internet businesses, reported this morning the price of its initial public offering of just under 52.2 million Class A common stock at $25.00 for each share.

“The shares will start trading on NASDAQ later today under the ticker YNDX, The offering will give Yandex an estimated market cap of $8 billion,” said Christian Harper, Director of EMEA Wealth Management at Woori BMO Group.

The firm is, therefore, raising a little over $1.3 billion and has given its underwriters a 30-day right to buy up to 5.2 million additional shares to cover eventual over-allocations. Yandex had valued their IPO at $20 to $22 per share earlier this month.

LinkedIn, which was made public last week, had already lifted the price per share just before.

“Yandex sells 15.4 million shares, pocketing $385 million, while some of its investors sell an amount of nearly 36.8 million shares, $920 million,” Harper added.

Yandex runs Russia’s most popular search engine and the most visited website (it’s also Russia’s largest online company by revenue). The business generated 64 percent of all Russian web traffic in 2010, trumping Google.

Web portal Yandex.ru drew 38.3 million unique users in March 2011. Yandex has operations in Belarus (yandex.by), Kazakhstan (yandex.kz), and Ukraine (yandex.ua), in addition to Russia. About $440 million hovered cumulative sales for 2010.

Founded in 1997, Yandex was recently claimed to have been considering an IPO, with talks going back to 2006. The firm called for an initial public offering in 2008 but soon decided to cancel the plans indefinitely due to the global economic crisis.

“The Russian website has done extremely well in its home country and neighbouring nations, allowing it to sell its IPO at such a price relative to what was originally planned,” said Andrew Williams, Director of Institutional Equity at Woori BMO Group.

Yandex is one of Russia’s leading high-tech firms, with an estimated 2,500 employee workforce. Yandex currently has offices in Russia (Moscow, St. Petersburg, Ekaterinburg, Novosibirsk and Kazan), Ukraine (Kiev, Odessa, and Simferopol) and the United States (in Palo Alto, California, to be precise).