Profit was found in the archives - Newspaper Kommersant No. 14 (7459) dated 01/26/2023

In 2022, the digitization of documents brought 6.4 billion rubles to the participants in this market in the Russian Federation, and they expect growth of 10-30% in 2023. Basically, we are talking about orders from banks and industry, as well as government projects, for example, to digitize the archives of military registration and enlistment offices. At the same time, analysts note that until 2022, 20% of the market was occupied by foreign players and so far their share has not significantly decreased.

Kommersant interviewed participants in the document digitization market in Russia about the results of 2022 and forecasts for 2023. According to BuildDocs, the market volume last year amounted to 6.4 billion rubles. The company's CEO Evgeny Buzlaev believes that by the end of 2023, total sales will reach 8 billion rubles. Content AI CEO Svetlana Dergacheva expects growth of "at least 10-15%", but on condition that it is related to the market and the scope of creating electronic archives. In Smart Engines they talk about an increase of 20-30%, in the company "Biorg" - by 15-20%.

We are talking about services for the translation of documents into digital form, the sale of scanning equipment, the licensing of standard programs for text recognition (OCR) and the development of individual solutions. The hostilities in Ukraine affected the OCR developer market: the Russian part of the Abbyy business was transferred to the new Content AI company, and the American Kofax closed the development center in St. Petersburg, stopped sales and maintenance in Russia.

From 2017 to 2022, foreign vendors occupied about 20% of the market, now the share has decreased by no more than 5 percentage points, Egor Girenko, manager of the Transformation Strategy practice at Reksoft Consulting, told Kommersant. At the same time, he noted that the market is quite fragmented: “There are about fifty domestic players with a share of more than 1%.

Document processing technologies in 2023 will be more actively implemented in banks, insurance companies and industry, says Vladimir Arlazarov, CEO of Smart Engines. The head of the National Council of the Financial Market, Andrey Yemelin, noted that the State Duma is currently considering a bill on the conversion of most paper documents of banks into electronic form: “When it is adopted, the digitization market will grow, as banks store cubic kilometers of paper documents.”

About 5 billion rubles were spent on transferring historical data presented in analog form to information systems in 2022, Ilya Verigin, director of work with state customers at Biorg, told Kommersant. He added that the costs of digitization are often included in the cost of services for the creation of information systems, and about 3 billion rubles. per year, civil servants send for digitization on their own: “When deadlines are reached, these funds also become available to participants in the open market.”

In November 2022, two months after the announcement of partial mobilization in Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on digitizing the data of those liable for military service (see "Kommersant" dated November 25, 2022). According to the decree, it was necessary to “ensure the conversion” of these data into digital form by December 30 of the same year. Other state projects on digitization are also being developed: in January 2022, Vladimir Putin ordered to organize the digitization of archival documents, and on December 16, the government submitted amendments to the State Duma law “On Archives” on a unified state information system (GIS) for access to their digital copies. “If this is implemented, we can safely talk about the growth of the market by 10 billion rubles. annually over the next 10-15 years,” says Mr. Verigin.

Many Russian IT companies proceed from the fact that “in times of instability, the money remains with the state,” but this creates a risk of increased dependence on government orders, says Denis Kasimov, CEO of Factory5 (which develops industrial software). This, in his opinion, creates difficulties when working on projects for customers outside of Moscow: “Contracts often stipulate that the cost of a man-hour cannot exceed the average for the region. Therefore, in many regions, taking into account the salaries of IT specialists, it is even difficult to coordinate work.”

Yuri Litvinenko, Nikita Korolev, Maxim Buylov

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