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Bartlomiej Owczarek weblog

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Search in CEE: Google is an underdog in some countries

Antyweb quoted the Next web article about search in Russia. What’s interesting in Russian search? It is not dominated by Google:

Most European search markets are dominated by Google and there seem to be no real local competitors. In Russia however, a fierce battle for the search query’s of the consumers is going on. Yakov Sadchikov from Quintura even mailed me that “the Russian search engines are coming.”

Reasons? Commenters point at different character set and language peculiarities (for example different grammatical cases).

Thanks to friends at Gemius I had an opportunity to read some interesting stuff about Internet markets in other CEE countries.. and Russian case is not the only one, even though in most countries Google rules the market.

In Czech Republic, for example, has approximately 60% share in search. But, Google search is gaining share there.

“Other” search engines have also significant share in Ukraine, Slovenia and Estonia.

In Poland, on the other hand, Google has 90% of the market, grammatical cases notwithstanding.

Recruiting in Lviv, Ukraine

I came back from Lviv yesterday. We were attending jobs fairs in the city.

Key lesson from the event: in Ukraine, technical universities, like one where fairs took place, often do without heating. Inside it is only slightly warmer that outside and people go around in coats.

Result: I am sick and one of my ears have not recovered yet from the pressure stress test on the plane and tomorrow I go to a concert.

On a different topic, even though recruitment potential seems promising, technical people in Lviv have serious problems with English. In fact even linguistics students had problems with English, which is quite ironic.

Ukraine for a change

I got somehow used to Moscow, but I also feel good about some change. So, this week, back to Kiev.

I wonder if it changed much since last time.

In Kiev, again

This week, it was time to go to the Ukraine. It’s been a year.

The purpose was to have a one hour meeting, however, the planes are a mess, and it could not be avoided to spend a night in the city. Also, there were no places on direct flights (I presume), so we had to make it through Vienna.

At least the flight to Vienna was nice.

Flight to Kiev

This time we even manage to have a couple of hours trip through Kiev, thanks to kindness of our hosts.

I’m actually back already, but there is no time for anything. The period before Christmas is rather hectic.

Ukrainian sailors in Hong Kong

This I didn’t expect, that I will speak Russian sooner than Chinese here.

They were both Sevastopol and one even spoke some Polish because he worked here. Main topic – communism good / no good, Ukraine could be like China if it didn’t collapse, etc.

Welcome to Ukraine

Lounge in VienAnd so almost all of last week I spent working in Kiev, which was actually my first ever visit to the Ukraine.

I don’t have to mention that I was more than happy for the opportunity, though as it turned out that I am still to see more of the country than the airport and the hotel. That’s the beauty of short and intensive projects, which are still my favorite ones, anyway.

My companions enjoyed the stay far less than myself, which is probably due to their having more private lives while less inclination for travelling. Also we were out of luck in finding some acceptable food, starting from miserable breakfest served in the hotel to less than impressive dishes in restaurants we were able to find.

Restaurant in Lybid hotelOnly in late evenings we could relax a bit in the restaurant..