Russian retail loyalty solution provider Synqera prepares international expansion

Earlier this month Synqera, a provider of solutions for retailers, announced that its “Loyalty Generators” kiosks have been installed in three stores of Korablik, a Russian retail chain specializing in children’s goods. Customers who enter the store can swipe their loyalty card at these kiosks to access their history of purchases and customer profile. The system will also provide them with personalized discount coupons.

The St. Petersburg-based company previously announced partnerships with Ulibka Radugi and Land, two other Russian retailers.

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Heads up! Russian developers invent 3D display for safe driving

A pair of Russian developers has created an application that projects navigation information onto the inside of a car windshield, improving road safety in conditions of poor visibility.

The application, called HUDWAY, was launched in Russia in August 2013, with its international version following two months later. It is already available in English, German, Polish, and Chinese. The co-founder and CEO of the project, Ivan Klabukov, is developing the startup together with his cousin, who three years ago became interested in professional car rallies.

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eBay and Russian Post agree to accelerate cross-border deliveries to Russia

The online marketplace eBay and Russian Post have signed a memorandum of cooperation in order to reduce the time of delivery of goods to Russia from the company’s major markets. The agreement on the joint delivery of parcels was signed by Vice-President of eBay Wendy Jones and Director of Russian Post Dmitry Strashnov.

Both customers and foreign retailers have often expressed their misgivings about the long delivery times of international orders handled by Russia’s national postal provider. As eBay is the dominant cross-border platform in Russia, responsible for the largest flow of goods into the country (some 90,000 parcels daily as of late 2013), the company has a major stake in speeding up deliveries.

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Visa forecasts $50 million loss on moving processing to Russia

The law requiring international payment systems to move processing to Russia in order to avoid paying a substantial security deposit will cost Visa $50 million in revenue, the management of the U.S. company said in a conference call on its quarterly report.

Management said Visa is continuing to work with the Russian authorities and banks on a commercial solution that will enable the company to continue serving clients in Russia.

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The mobile games market in Russia grew by nine times from 2010 through 2013

Experts at Group and Newzoo have assessed the mobile games market in Russia and compared gamers from a variety of countries. The volume of the mobile games market in Russia has grown more than nine times from 2010 through 2013, when it amounted to $165 million. In 2010, the share of mobile games in the online segment was only 5% ($18 million).

“Any increase in the mobile games market is traditionally attributed to a growing number of smart phones and tablet PCs. However, a developing interest by mobile platforms to increase the quantity of games, enablement of new APIs, providing advanced technology, etc., are also contributing factors,” noted Vasily Maguryan, head of the Group’s IT-Territory studio.

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Social media takes over the Russian Internet

As previously reported by Russian Search Marketing, Russian Internet users spend a whopping 40% of their time online on social networking sites.  As westerners we are all familiar with Facebook but the site actually is much less popular in Russia than you would expect in part due to its lower level of functionality than the more popular local Russian social media sites.

Vkontakte or VK (literally translates to “in contact”), the most popular Russian social networking site, is also the second most visited site on the Russian Internet behind Yandex.

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Interior ministry seeks ways to track Tor user data

Russia’s Interior Ministry is offering nearly 4 million rubles ($114,000) for research on ways to get data on users of the anonymous web surfing network Tor.

The announcement, posted on the government’s official state procurement website earlier this month, comes amid a massive upsurge in Russian users of Tor, which allows Internet users to anonymously visit websites blocked in their country.

Continue reading group Group sites blocked in Italy over piracy allegation

Access to online services of the Group has been blocked in Italy by order of a Roman court. The Russian portal is on a list of 25 websites, along with filesharing and video streaming sites, that face allegations of piracy, Group reports.

The group stated that it became aware of the problem after receiving complaints from users. It added that the action was taken in response to a complaint filed by Italian film distributor Eyemoon Pictures claiming that video content it controls was being illegally hosted by sites belonging to the group.

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First charge recorded in a non-FSB-sanctioned foreign smartphone purchase

Russia has witnessed its first case brought by the federal customs service against a local resident for trying to order a smartphone from a foreign online store. Eugene Yarutkin, a resident of Dimitrovgrad (Ulyanovsk region), was given the dubious honor when he ordered a Motorola Moto G with a data encryption feature from a German online store in May 2014.

According to a law enacted in 2012, telecom equipment with an encryption function that is not certified by the FSB (Russia’s state security organization) is not to be imported to member countries of the Customs Union.  Continue reading


SafeData invests in CDN operator Ngenix

The Center for Network Interaction Technologies (TsTVS in Russian) has invested in the content delivery network (CDN) operator Ngenix and received a blocking stake in it, reported last week IKS Media, an online publication covering the Russian IT and telecom market. TsTVS  is owned by data center operator SafeData and prominent Russian businessman Dmitry Shumkov.

Ngenix will use the funds it received for the development of the CDN cloud platform for broadcasting video on the Internet, increasing the speed of ecommerce sites and guaranteeing the security of web apps for corporate and state customers.

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