Marriage portal - Newspaper Kommersant No. 52 (7497) dated 03/28/2023
Several large and well-known contenders have appeared on the Banki.ru portal, in which Russia Partners is selling a stake. In particular, Kommersant's sources mention the Moscow Exchange, Yandex, and Vladimir Potanin. Experts see the basis for the interest of all potential buyers, but they call the possible price of the transaction too high.
The Moscow Exchange claims 40% of the Banki.ru portal, owned by the Russia Partners investment fund, a source close to the trading floor told Kommersant, and confirmed the interlocutor in the financial market. Among other contenders, he names "Yandex" and the owner of the company "Interros" Vladimir Potanin. Kommersant did not respond to the Moscow Exchange, representatives of Yandex and Mr. Potanin declined to comment. “There are many who want to, but the deal is still very far away,” one of Kommersant’s interlocutors clarifies. Banks.ru does not comment on the sale of the portal.
In mid-March, RBC reported that the Russia Partners fund put up for sale more than 40% of the shares of Bankov.ru. Other owners (about 60%) can also sell their shares - Winter Capital and Elbrus Capital funds. According to SPARK-Interfax, formally Banki.ru is 100% owned by the Cypriot Banki.ru Holding Ltd. Judging by the extract from the register of Cyprus, which Kommersant studied, the capital of the latter is divided between the American SG Financial Marketplace Holdings and the Cypriot Realstreet Trading Limited, which, in turn, belongs to the Cypriot Freestart Trading Limited and Janeville Limited.
The main business of Bankov.ru is lead generation, the site provides traffic to various financial companies, redirecting visitors to their sites. Relatively recently, a new direction has also appeared - a financial marketplace, which was included in the register of the Central Bank in September 2022. There are nine banks among the participants of the platform on the site.
RBC sources spoke about the price of 13-16 billion rubles. for the entire block of shares. The total revenue of all related legal entities of Bankov.ru for 2021 amounted to about 4.8 billion rubles. According to the portal's reporting, a significant share fell on lead generation (almost 1.6 billion rubles), the rest - on contextual and media advertising, subscriptions, etc. At the end of the year, the portal received a loss of 402 million rubles. against earnings a year earlier. This happened against the backdrop of a threefold increase in commercial expenses (up to 2.1 billion rubles), mainly for advertising. In addition, in the same year, the company received a loan from a related party for RUB 700 million. Net assets for the year decreased by almost 3.2 times, to 183.7 million rubles.
According to RBC, the company's EBITDA in 2022 was about 1 billion rubles. (however, last year's financial statements were not published).
NSP partner Oleksandr Nektorov notes that before the outbreak of hostilities in Ukraine, technology companies could sell for more than twice the proceeds. More often, however, pricing is tied to EBITDA. “In super-technological foreign companies, the value of an asset could be 10 EBITDA or even higher,” the expert clarifies.
At the same time, according to Mr. Nektorov, “there has always been a discount on Russian business”, and in the current conditions there are additional factors - the fact that not a controlling stake is being sold, reduced liquidity, since it is necessary to obtain the consent of regulatory authorities, including the FAS , the government commission of the Ministry of Finance for the control of foreign investment, since formally the owner is a non-resident.
Those participants in the technology market who already provide financial services and want to develop them may be interested in buying Bankov.ru.
These include, in particular, "Yandex", which has the necessary financial resources for the purchase, said the managing partner of "Stride Consulting" Igor Bondarenko. “The credit lead generation business process for a bank can create a synergistic effect with Yandex advertising traffic,” he believes.
The Moscow Exchange, which launched the Finuslugi marketplace, could expand the range of financial services, but this purchase would require significant additional investments, the expert believes. For the Interros group, which returned to the financial market last year by purchasing Rosbank and a stake in TCS Group, Mr. Bondarenko adds, the portal could become an additional technological resource that will accelerate the development of the group as a whole.