Yandex, a technology company that builds intelligent products and services powered by machine learning, announced that MLU B.V. (“MLU”), Yandex’s ride-sharing and food delivery joint venture with Uber, has agreed to acquire the IP and call-centers of the Vezet group of companies in Russia.
The current shareholders of Vezet will receive new shares in MLU, representing up to 3.6% of the issued share capital of the company at closing, together with up to $71.5 million in cash, subject to certain operating and integration milestones. Following the completion of the acquisition, Yandex NV will own 56.2% of MLU, Uber will own 35.0%, and approximately 5.3% will be held by employees under the MLU equity incentive plan.
After the closing of the transaction, in addition to the Yandex.Taxi and Uber Russia apps, consumers will be able to order a taxi by using Rutaxi and Vezet mobile applications or by using the Vezet call center. Vezet customers will also benefit from various MLU technologies that enhance safety and security. Driver-side apps will be integrated into a single technology platform. As a result, our passengers will see lower wait times while drivers will benefit from increased utilization rates. MLU and Vezet will continue to invest in driver training and support centers, driver loyalty programs, and other services that support drivers and fleet management companies.
MLU also plans to invest approximately 8 billion rubles in the Russian regions over the next three years. Half of this investment will be aimed at developing the safety and security of our services, with the other half aimed at supporting regional drivers and taxi fleet companies.
The companies expect to close the deal by the end of 2019. The transaction has been approved by the Supervisory Board of MLU and by the Boards of Directors of Yandex NV and Vezet, and is subject to approval by the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service.