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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Google Plans to Hire Sales, Operations Staff in Russia

Google plans to recruit more direct sales and operations workers in Russia as the local market for Internet advertising rebounds, Nikesh Arora, head of global sales operations, said Thursday.

The owner of the world’s largest Internet search engine “will keep up with the pace of the market, and as the market evolves, we’ll continue hiring people,” Arora said in an interview.

Google has seen “lots of interest from global advertisers who want to participate in the Russian economy,” he said.

Russian advertising spending increased 5 percent to 46 billion rubles ($1.52 billion) in the first quarter, the Association of Communications Agencies said Wednesday. Internet media led the advance, with ad revenue surging 31 percent to 3.4 billion rubles, according to the association. Ad growth may exceed 10 percent this year as the economy rebounds from its steepest decline on record, said Sergei Piskarev, head of Gazprom’s media arm.

“We like the way our market share is progressing in Russia,” Arora said in the interview. “We offer a unique opportunity” in the country, he added.

Internet ad sales may expand by between 30 percent and 50 percent this year, said Eugene Lomize, head of technology and sales at Yandex.

Google, which competes against Yandex and Rambler in Russia, “hasn’t come anywhere near” exceeding Yandex in market share in the country, Lomize said. Yandex, which has 63 percent of Russia’s Internet search market, is adding sales offices in Russia to tap growing Internet use in the region, he added.

Yandex expects sales growth to outpace the Russian Internet ad market this year, Lomize said. Revenue climbed 14 percent to 8.7 billion rubles in 2009 on higher advertising sales, the company said Feb. 1.