Vladimir Yevtushenkov will quit the media business

His "Sistema Mass-Media" will invest in technological projects, and gradually sell media assets.
"Mass Media" (SMM) in early 2016 will be transformed into a private equity fund, and change its name, told "Vedomosti" the president of that company Gulnara Khasianova. Lead Foundation is Alexei Katkov. Khasianova itself will remain in the fund's board of directors and will participate in its management, she says. Before "Kommersant" wrote that she will go to work in the "Micron" (also included in the AFC). Khasianova and representative "system" does not comment.

The new fund will invest exclusively in technology projects, but not in media companies, and talk Khasianova Katkov, but no further details are not disclosed. The Fund will be called Sistema VC, sources told "Vedomosti" in the AFC. Khasianova Katkov and confirmed that they had indeed offered such an option is the new name for the company, it is now being considered.

HMM - a subsidiary of AFK "Sistema" owned by Vladimir Yevtushenko. It manages the media assets of the holding. Now SMM includes TV "Stream" (runs 9 pay non-terrestrial channels), a technology company"Stream" (creates and manages media services for operators), "United Russian studio" (which owns film studios in St. Petersburg), advertising agency "Maxim" and DTV (satellite TV operator). Revenue SMM in 2014 decreased by 3.8% to 3.4 billion rubles. This year, according to Khasianova, revenues remained at the same level, but given the fact that in April from the CMM left the RWS production company, revenues remaining media company assets grew. The AFC statements indicated that CMM revenue increases primarily because the Internet company "Stream".

Evtushenkova have always had big ambitions in the media business (see. Below), he undertook a number of attempts, but to create a great entertainment holding him and failed over the past 20 years. For businessman media business has always been a personal matter, he wanted to make "beautiful" story that explains the source "Vedomosti" in the "System". Although it has long been clear that the CMM - a set of small, unrelated assets without a significant growth potential and even the possibility of a unified strategy, Evtushenkov until recently did not want to just give up on this and all went through various development options, adds the source "Vedomosti". The last two years it was the "new media".

In the fall of 2014 to the shareholders of SMM defended the strategy of investment in the so-called new media, ie, media assets online, confirmed Khasianova. To realize this strategy has prevented the current crisis in the advertising market, she points out. First sources of "Vedomosti" in the "System" was told that in the framework of this strategy, the CMM was going to, in particular, to invest in a gaming portal Kanobu and the deal fell through at the last moment because of the arrest Evtushenkova.

This year SMM has developed and defended a different strategy - is to focus exclusively on investments in Internet companies, especially technology. "And we realized that the media assets HMM we can not help and synergies will not be here, the implementation of the strategy is possible without reference to him, so the new foundation we are building from scratch, as if in parallel to our media business, - said Khasianova. - Moreover, we have clearly realized that the existing assets nIt allows them to build on the basis of a really big mediaistoriyu ". If the first part of SMM assets were at a loss, then the last two years the company has managed to ensure that all its assets are profitable, and the holding as a whole has become profitable, she points out. According Khasianova, it turned out as due to revenue growth and by reducing the costs of the management company. If in 2013 the net profit of SMM was 1 million rubles, in 2014 -.. 140 million rubles this year -. 230 million rubles, predicts the president of the company. CMM staff member said that part of the cost optimization was to reduce the employees of the management company. Another employee points out that the company's profit increased primarily due to service "Stream", the packet is received from the CMM "System" and whose results consolidates just from 2014

Now SMM media assets put up for sale, say sources, "Vedomosti" in the "System". Khasianova said that the problem urgently to sell assets not: "They are now self-sufficient. Of course, if we get a good offer, we sell them. " First sources of "Vedomosti" in & laquo; System "was told that the Internet company" Stream "and DTV can go to the MTS. MTS has already bought "Stream" and CTV, said a source in the SMM, the deal will be announced shortly. Agency "Maxima" back in 2014 It came under the control of the advertising group ADV message, and the studio will be part of the media does not, and business development holding.

Negotiations for the sale of pay TV SMM is more than a year, told "Vedomosti" of its employees, as well as the heads of the three media companies that have received proposals. One of them says that CMM asks for these channels at least 1 billion rubles.

Khasianova said that SMM assets have offers from potential buyers, but the details, "the company will share later." Representatives of MTS and "System" to comment on the matter dropped.

Mediaistoriya "System"

Yevtushenkov first media assets acquired as early as 1997, three years after created the "System". It was the TVC channel (used primarily as a political resource in the campaign of former Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov), the magazine & LAQuo; Voyage and Leisure "and the newspaper -" Metro "," Culture "," Change "," Literary Gazette "," Rossia ". TVC rather quickly returned to state ownership, and the newspapers with magazines "System" sold or closed in the next 10 years. The businessman quickly parted with acquired at the end of the 90s. radio - "Moscow speaking" and "Public Russian Radio". As explained by the then CEO of SMM Alexander Leiviman, radiobiznes sold because it was "too small."

Then Yevtushenkov said that his agency "Maxima" among the top three in the advertising market. Save these positions the agency failed.

At the beginning of the 2000s. Yevtushenkov became interested in cinema. CMM has become a co-owner of the production company Thema Production, created by Mikhail Dunayev and Jimmy de Brabant. This company is going to produce "mass English-language movie" and shoot it in Europe. Yevtushenkov has agreed to invest in such pictures "tens of millions of dollars." First, all developed well: Thema Production has become a co-producer of such famous filmsdirectors like Woody Allen and Werner Herzog. "Match Point" Allen participated in the Cannes Film Festival, and the film Herzog claimed the "Oscar" nomination but never received. The following investments in movies became less successful, from producing Yevtushenkov refused and fired Dunayev.

As a result, the businessman was not only without the "Oscar", but without Russian Hollywood. In 2005 "System" has announced that it will build in St. Petersburg, a large studio, which will be the site for the filming of movies, not only Russian, but also Hollywood projects. Construction costs have grown to the extent of the project - $ 7-8 million to $ 150 million, but Hollywood and European film companies to shoot here did not.. All this time Yevtushenkov tried to find a major partner for the studio, but to no avail. In 2010 he agreed to start the second pavilion with VGTRK, but construction has not begun. In 2012 He almost convinced the government to combine the studio and "Lenfilm", but sharply against the project were a few Russian directors. In the same year, the CMM has closed due to lack of orders TV station in Moscow,last week's St. Petersburg studio "systems" announced that for the same reason give half space for exhibitions and cultural events.

It did not work in the "System" and to create a vertically integrated kinoholding: in 2007 AFC previously agreed to merge their production company with the largest at the time the network "Karo" cinema, but the deal has again not been concluded.

Parallel CMM built its telecommunications and television business. In 2004 Leiviman promised that the CMM will become "a pioneer in many areas of broadcasting" and will spend up to $ 150 million on the project to create a "multimedia networks" the provision of services for video viewing, downloading games and e-commerce. The leader in the pay-TV market "system" did not become. She scrambled bring stable revenue, but are not included in the top 20 most popular in the country.

In 2012 Yevtushenkov made another attempt to enter the market of TV broadcasting. "System" has bought a controlling stake in the channel "Muscovy", which is broadcast a few hours a day on the ethereal frequency TVC. KholdinMr. hoped to exchange these shares for a package in the TVC, but the plan failed, the action "Muscovy" were sold to the Moscow government.

Yevtushenkov was well aware that a major breakthrough in the media he can not, and in 2011 SMM hired manager Peter Hervey, CTC Media's founder. "System" is dissatisfied with the slow growth of the CMM, explained sources while in the holding company is to create Hervey growth point and dramatically increase its capitalization. But Hervey worked in the "System" less than a year. Development strategies are developed they did not approve of holding SMM. Hervey painted beautiful plans, asked multibillion investments in "new media", but could not prove Evtushenko that these investments will pay off is guaranteed. In 2012 AFC invited to lead the CMM former executive director of CTC Media Vladimir Khanumyan. He did not defend his strategy and in early 2014 moved to the "Gazprom-Media". After that, CMM became Khasianova control.

Rend Evtushenkova media business and internal conflicts. This year Yuri Sapronov, RWS founder of the production company (it was the largest business in the composition of the CMM) Regained control of the company (his package increased to 70%), the remaining shares are now directly owned by the "system" rather than the CMM, as before. The reason for the company's exit from the SMM became hard and Khasianova Sapronova conflict, says a source "Vedomosti".

Two years ago, the AFC decided to part with media assets, if the business does not show clear progress, sources say "Vedomosti" in the holding. Khasianova increased profitability of CMM, but fundamentally the situation could not change, they say. Two employees of SMM say it is not surprising: "Khasianova - an experienced manager, but there had to be a deep knowledge of the media market is that it does not possess." Another interlocutor "Vedomosti" said that she does not know how to communicate with creative people that create media.

Cadres decide everything

Why Yevtushenkov was not able to build a great media business? "Vedomosti" The parties explain it differently. In the AFC has never been "anchor" in the media asset, for example a large-air channel, around which you can build a business, but withtroitelstvo this business from the ground up proved to be too costly - in money and resources, said an employee of the "System". In general, the media business by the ratio of risk and financial return to the "System" as an investment company turned out to be unattractive, he concluded. Among the Russian oligarchs virtually no one was able to recoup the large investments in the media, it resembles the head of a large media company, with the exception of "Alpha groups", which is very successful and in time sold Yuri Kovalchuk and its partners package in CTC Media. The head of another media company says Yevtushenkov, for all his desire to make a major media holding wary of projects in this area: "He often offered to invest in internet companies - with a little revenue, but the potential for growth, but he did not believe in them until recently and I did not want to risk large sums of money. As a result, the projects went to other investors. "

At the beginning of the 2000s. Yevtushenkov was negotiating with the founders of "Yandex", but did not believe in them and missed the loudest history of Runet, it resembles the source "Vedomosti";. Sapronov confident that the AFC had to rely just on the existing assets and develop them, and not to seek external objects for the multibillion-dollar investment.

"To be honest, I did not even imagine how difficult this business And if imagined, perhaps, and not useful Although, of course, this is all very interesting..", - Said Yevtushenkov in an interview with "MK" is still in 2001 answering questions about their media assets.

Businessman, according to his friends, complained that he had always had bad luck with the leaders of the media business. "This is a business like any other people do - agrees to a source in the SMM. - People who know how to make any food or not. Yevtushenkov has not found a right person for this business, and have not found a common language with those who had managed media assets. In any case it is impossible to control the media company plant manager from another branch. In most cases, a manager more than hurt. " This interlocutor "Vedomosti" pleased that the management company - the successor of the CMM will Katkov, who has long worked in the Internet market: "It gives Nadiaexpect that the fund will ".