St.Petersburg based online consultations platform “LiveTex” acquires its Moscow competitor “RedHelper”


St. Petersburg developer of platform for online consultations “LiveTex” among the owners of which is the Vaizra Capital Fund of the former shareholders of “Vkontakte” Lev Leviev and Vyacheslav Mirilashvili has absorbed its Moscow competitor “RedHelper”. The deal was confirmed by Leta Capital Fund (co-owner of RedHelper), by representative of the “LiveTex” and the founder of RedHelper Anton Chernyatin.

Following the transaction, the shareholders of RedHelper will receive a share in “LiveTex” (its size is not disclosed) and $1 million. Deal is designed to increase the total capitalization, product line and strengthen the team with RedHelper employees, emphasizes Mr. Chernyatin.

The transaction RedHelper also the exit for Leta Capital Fund which invested in the project $600 thousand in 2012. The ownership proportion of the Fund in a startup was not disclosed, but according to the register, the sole shareholder of RedHelper is “Omnokalnye technologii” LLC whose co-owners are Leysan Krasnenkova (presumably the wife of Boris Krasnenkov – President of “SIBUR Arena”) – 41,95%, Alexander Zaitsev (19.9%) and Marina Gorlovka (21.8 percent). 32,27% in OOO “Redhelper” is pledged with the managing partner of Leta Capital Alexander Chachava.

Among “LiveTex” products are — online-consultant for websites that allows you to communicate with customers in the chat, leads generator, collect user contacts, call back. “LiveTex” has  more than 5 thousand clients, including Sberbank, Headhunter, RBC, and Tele2.

In 2014 Vaizra Capital Fund  of the former shareholders of “Vkontakte” Lev Leviev and Vyacheslav Mirilashvili, has invested in the company $4 million. Vaizra Capital owns 18.64% “Livtex” LLC. Among other shareholders of the company: Vladimir Bakeev owns 29.5%, Pavel Kokorev owns 24,01% shares, Angelica Shklyar with a share of 22,32%, and Sergey Yeltsov owns a 5.52% of “Livtex” LLC. The company’s revenue in 2015 amounted to 177,4 million RUB with net profit of 10.5 million rubles, the data for the year 2016 the company did not disclose.

RedHelper markets similar products, while the company has a strong position in the segment of small and medium businesses (about 10 thousand paying customers). The company is the developer of the service, aimed at increasing the sales of electronic Commerce platforms. The solution includes: LiveChat (instant communication between visitor and operator), technology sharing browser and optimal load for operators system. System is successfully distributed in more than 15 countries.

“RedHelper is absorbed with the goal of expanding coverage,” confirm representatvies of “LiveTex”. The revenue of “Redhelper” LLC in 2015 amounted to RUB 17.5 million with net profit of 5.6 million rubles, the data for 2016 were not disclosed.

In Russia, the multiplier for the transactions in this segment is no more than three to revenue, and can vary greatly depending on the “non-market” arrangements, says CEO of WhatsHelp (platform for marketing, messengers) Dmitry Chistov. According to him,  RedHelper revenue for 2016 could be about 50-60 million rubles, i.e. the company valuation”depending on the desire to sell” could be 100-200 million.

Services such as online chat on the websites in the near future there will be in demand for customer service as an alternative to voice and e-mail, said Mr. Chistov. According to him, with the growing popularity of instant messengers all popular players integrated into these channels that made these services even more popular. The volume of this market in Russia and the CIS is estimated at several billion rubles a year.

However, according to founder and owner of Calltouch Mikhail Fedorinin, today the growth rate of this niche market is already slowing — the market is saturated after the breakthrough and the dynamics of systems installations is a proof. He cites data of Datanyze: number of sites using the technology chats of RedHelper and “LiveTex” occupy fourth and fifth position on the Russian market with shares of 7.68% and 7,54%, respectively. The top 3 includes JivoChat (43,19%), Onicon (14,41%), and SiteHeart (10.6%). Potential investors in such companies could be CRM systems, such as 1C, amoCRM, Bitrix24, said Mr. Fedorinin, today they are trying to not only drive sales but to link them to marketing expenses.

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