Interview Vice President "VKontakte" Elijah Perekopskiy | Предприниматель

Interview Vice President “VKontakte” Elijah Perekopskiy

Recently social network “VKontakte” announced the imminent move into the blast zone. com, in fact, by launching its international expansion. If the company in Russia in the lead with a convincing margin, in most European countries have to start from scratch. How much and what makes “VKontakte”, where does the idea of ??eccentricity management major social networks in Russia and what are the plans of the company, said vice president and head of the network’s Moscow office Ilya Rekopsky.

— How much do you earn?

— Now in our monthly revenue of about $ 8-9 million, approximately 60% is targeted advertising. Only on targeted advertising, we plan to make this year about 2 billion rubles ($ 71 million). 30% of the revenue brought an application for another 10% — other services. This year we expect to increase our revenues by 70-100% compared with 2010. While we are clearly fulfilling a plan.

Help! In 2010, according to the reporting Mail. Ru Group, turnover “VKontakte” made $ 93.8 million revenue was less than — through payments to developers and mobile operators.

— Go to an independent advertising sales and the failure of the banners at the beginning of 2011 proved to be justified?

— The transition was, as we predicted, it is absolutely justified. We have to earn a promotion several times more money. And targeted ads cause users a lot more interest than the banners, because they focus on them. Our system of targeted advertising is improving every day, and now offers a targeted audience of more than 20 unique parameters.

In March you introduced a new format of the advertisements with CPM, not only for clicks, as before. In addition, we launched a video ad.

— Do the bizarre decisions of your management — such as a ban on tobacco advertising — the advertising revenue?

— No, not influence. We have given up tobacco advertising at a time when tobacco companies are still planning to start spending our part of their advertising budgets, but have not yet begun. No advertising revenue decline, we have not seen. Cigarettes — a disgusting drug, carrying a huge detriment to society. In our company there is not one smoker — and no use of alcohol. We believe that we must do everything possible to make a contribution to the fight against tobacco companies.

— The extent to which eccentricity — a part of your business, not personal property of the company’s founders?

— Internet is changing every second, and often have to make some decisions very quickly. From the outside, perhaps, it seems that it is eccentric, but in fact it is common sense that we all are guided. We refused to banner ads. All were convinced that this is a very risky move that will reduce our income. A month later we were convinced that the decision was correct.

Another reason that we might be considered too outside the box thinking, is that in most cases we do not implement projects with external partners. Typically, these proposals involve the use of foreign technology, but we have high-tech company and technology will never outsource. If we want to launch a new service, we always develop it themselves.

Also, we daily receive proposals on further monetize our services and reject them. Our model of monetization is about more than two things: targeted advertising and applications. Unfortunately, not everyone understands our position.

— How fast growing “VKontakte” in different parts of Russia?

— We grow exactly in proportion to the level of internet penetration in the country. If in Moscow and St. Petersburg lives most people and the highest level of internet penetration, and that users have in these cities the most. At the same time the share of the two capitals have no more than 20-25% of our active users. About 60% of our audience are over 25 years, contrary to popular opinion, it is not out of school and university students.

— Have reached the saturation you in St. Petersburg ?

— No, not yet reached. In St. Petersburg is still far from 100% internet penetration.

— How do you grow in foreign markets?

— We are the most popular site in Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus. We hold strong positions in all CIS countries and achieved some success in other neighboring countries.

— A related shift in the domain vk. com?

— This domain is shorter, prettier and much easier to read in other countries. International expansion — one of our key strategic objectives for 2011.

— And how do you start?

— Most likely, with European countries. Since when in the first place, while difficult to say. It’s all under active consideration.

— Do you feel the pressure of competitors?

— The pressure we feel. We are actively continuing to grow. In May, our attendance has continued to grow and reached a record number of 26 million unique users per day. Every year we have at least doubled, and this year is unlikely to be the exception.

— Are you There were offers to buy from someone other than Milner?

— Proposals received constantly, both from Russian investors, as well as from Western foundations.

— Do you have an exit strategy at all — public or not?

— We do not think in terms of “exit strategy”. We are building a company in which we want to work not for a year or two, but decades. The only reason that we have attracted investments from Mail.Ru, — are investments in infrastructure. On the money we have built our data center channels. Now we have quite enough money to grow at their own expense.

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