Mail.ru Group to allocate 1 bn rubles to supporting small and medium-sized businesses. A message from CEO Boris Dobrodeev

“The spread of coronavirus has changed our day-to-day lives, and this is primarily manifested in all business activities. For the big players, the forced limitations are a large source of stress, yet the companies’ scale allows them to adapt processes quickly to overcome these hurdles.

The story is very different when it comes to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as they have suffered a big blow from the virus and the obligatory measures to curb it. Small businesses are the backbone of the well-being of tens of millions of households – yet many of them are in dire straits right now.

From day one of this new threat, we have been helping the community rebuild – at least partly – to go back to its normal everyday life with the help of our products and services. We believe it is our duty today to act preemptively to help SMEs.

We have established a task force to do that, and we are allocating 1 bn rubles to support the following categories:

1. Companies and entrepreneurs in general: VK and OK social networks will double advertising budgets on SMEs’ mobile accounts;

2. Companies and entrepreneurs providing services remotely and at home: classifieds service Youla will be promoting remote services in its main feed. It will also offer sellers up to 200 free ads a month, and an option of free promotion in exchange for bonuses;

3. Companies forced to move their business online: we will offer a package of free services from the Mail.ru for Business platform;

4. Restaurants: Delivery Club is lowering its commission for all newly subscribing partners, and VK will issue grants for first-time promotion for cafes and restaurants;

5. Realty companies: our digital real estate agency 33 Slona will waive its share of commission in favor of realtors and agencies;

6. Companies facing staffing problems: the Worki HR service is offering bonus cash support to businesses ailing due to the crisis. The company is also extending the duration on pre-paid services with the possibility of using them at a later date;

7. Taxi drivers: aggregator Citymobil will compensate drivers for downtime if they were either diagnosed with coronavirus or came into contact with COVID-19 positive passengers.  Moreover, the company is already providing drivers with face masks, antiseptics and disinfectants.

Our colleagues will have detailed step-by-step instructions on how to receive this aid shortly.

Mail.ru Group will continue offering its support to users, its peers and its partners by all means possible until society beats coronavirus – and after that, too.”

Boris Dobrodeev, CEO of Mail.ru Group