The ticket operator Kassir.ru, in a pre-trial procedure, demanded compensation from Yandex for 328 million rubles in lost profits due to the creation by the Internet company of discriminatory conditions in the search engine with the help of “sorcerers”. According to the representative of the service, the corresponding claim was sent to Yandex on September 20.
The claim states that from 2018 to 2021, Yandex Afisha poached potential customers of Kassira.ru using “sorcerers”, which led to a significant outflow of the service’s customer base.
Evgeny Finkelstein, the CEO of the Kassir.ru service has been quoted saying:
A settlement agreement was concluded between the FAS and Yandex, but it did not take into account the interest of Kassir.ru, we suffered significant losses.
Recall that the ticket operator Kassir.ru in 2019 was the first to complain to the FAS about unfair competition from Yandex. The service, in fact, was the initiator of a resonant antitrust case about “sorcerers”, which ended in a settlement agreement between Yandex and Internet services in January of this year. Kassir.ru did not agree with the terms of the settlement agreement and tried to challenge it in the magistrate’s court but to no avail.
Lawyers point out that if the companies fail to resolve the dispute out of court, Kassir.ru has the right to file a lawsuit against Yandex. The ticket operator will no longer have to prove that Yandex has violated the law on competition (the company can refer to the decision of the antimonopoly dispute), but it is necessary to prove the very fact of causing losses and justify the amount of damage.
In order to win the case, Kassir.ru must prove in numbers the percentage of user churn due to Yandex’s actions, and that this churn is not associated with any other circumstances.
According to them, disputes about lost profits are usually the most difficult, because it is quite difficult to prove the amount of income that could have been received: this requires a large number of financial documents, financial analytics, and possibly an examination.
At the time of writing this article, and publication, Yandex has declined to comment on the situation.