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Yandex Buys Startup Fuel Delivery Service

Yandex offices/ ermakov/ Flickr

Russian car-sharing company Yandex.Drive, owned by Russia's largest internet group Yandex, has bought startup fuel delivery service Toplivo v Bak, Yandex and the founder of the startup said on Wednesday.

Toplivo v Bak, which translates as "Fuel to the Tank," will help Yandex.Drive improve the fueling of its growing car fleet, the company said in a statement. The size of the deal was not disclosed.

Toplivo v Bak and rival company Pump deliver fuel direct to parked cars on behalf of car-sharing companies and private clients. They fill up fuel tanks at the curbside on receipt of an order via a smartphone app, even if the owner is not there.

The companies are riding the trend for on-demand delivery of goods pioneered by U.S. companies such as Uber and Amazon via smartphone technology, which is taking off in Russian cities.

Yandex said Toplivo v Bak would stop servicing private and corporate clients after the acquisition, in order to focus on improving Yandex.Drive. That will leave the Pump startup as the only company serving private clients in Russian cities.

Toplivo v Bak worked in Moscow, St Petersburg and Sochi.

Alina Kovalevich, general director of Toplivo v Bak, confirmed the deal but declined further comments. 

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