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|Type||Joint stock company|
|Headquarters||Prague, Czech Republic|
|Area served||Czech Republic, Slovak Republic|
|Key people||Pavel Zima (CEO) |
|Industry||Internet, Computer software|
|Revenue||▲1,4 billion CZK (2008)|
|Operating income||▲625 million CZK (2008)|
|Employees||Over 600 (2008)|
Seznam.cz (or just Seznam, which means list in English) is the most visited web portal in Czech Republic. Founded in 1996 by Ivo Lukačovič in Prague as the fist web portal in Czech Republic. In 2008 Seznam reached turnover around 1.7 billion CZK. Seznam started with search engine and internet version of yellow pages. Today, Seznam runs more than 15 different web services and associated brands. Seznam had more than 4 million unique visitors per month at the end of 2008. Among the most popular services, according to NetMonitor, are Seznam homepage, Seznam Email, Seznam Search and Seznam yellow pages.
On the Czech market, Seznam.cz was up to 2008 in competition with portals Centrum.cz and Atlas.cz. These portals, even after they merged in 2008, no longer have trend to overcome Seznam in near future. The biggest competitor to Seznam is global Google, especially in the full-text search.
Seznam is the most often displayed page in the Czech Republic, in contrast to the rest of the EU where Google dominates. In Czech Republic Google is fifth. As of May 2008, Seznam is dominating internet search engine in the Czech Republic (59.89%) with Google on the second place (31.61%).
Seznam, with four other companies in the world, is still number one search engine in its region. Other such search engines are Baidu (China), Naver (South Korea), Yahoo Japan (Japan) and Yandex (Russia).
Seznam uses a Czech rhyme Seznam - najdu tam, co neznám (Seznam, I find there, what I don't know).
Seznam, founded by Ivo Lukačovič, began as first internet yellow pages and search engine in Czech Republic in 1996. Ivo started his business with 50.000 CZK he accumulated. In 1998 Seznam added email to its portfolio, with email accounts running on @seznam.cz domain. Since than, more brands and services came on-line. In 2001, Seznam was engaged in financial, social and political news, TV programs, weather forecasts, dictionaries, maps and comunity services.
In 2000 Spray International, a Swedish web portal company, invested into Seznam. At that time Seznam become a joint stock company. Until 2000, Ivo Lukačovič was self-employed and Seznam was his own sole business. With money invested, Spray International probably bought around 30% of Seznam's stocks. Exact numbers are not known. Ivo Lukačovič and Seznam officals never released any details about the transaction. What has been confirmed, that Ivo Lukačovič held at least 70% of Seznam's stocks after the investment.
Spray entered Seznam with intention to run for an IPO. However, Spray never reached it's goal. After the burst of dot-com bubble in 2000, Spray resigned any more attempts for IPO. There are rumors about Spray having obligation against Ivo Lukačovič by not reaching an IPO. In 2003 Ivo Lukačovič increased base capital of Seznam without Spray and became 70% owner of Seznam. After 2003 Ivo Lukačovič remains major stockholder of Seznam.
In 2005 Seznam replaced its search engine technology with its own one. Up to 2003 Seznam used fulltext engine from Czech company Jyxo. In H2 2005 Seznam acquired Czech firm ATC. ATC was amongst other things running email server Email.cz. Email services Email.cz and Seznam.cz has been merged together.
In 2006 Seznam moved it's headquarters from Prague Košíře to more ostentatious location at Prague Anděl. In this year Ivo Lukačovič resigned on directly leading day to day business and Pavel Zima became CEO. During autumn of 2006 Seznam acquired all email users from another web portal Czech On Line, with their domain @post.cz.
In 2007 Seznam bought 50% of Global Inspiration, Czech company running video portal Stream.cz, similar to global YouTube. Lycos Europe (superseder of Spray International) sold its 30% share in Seznam to Tiger Holding and Miura International. Lycos received more that 1.7 billion CZK from this transaction.
In 2008 Czech news spread information about alleged meetings between Seznam and Goldman Sachs representatives to find buyer for Seznam. Ivo Lukačovič and Seznam representatives denies this. These speculations passed with the start of financial crisis in Europe during late 2008.
Seznam vs. Google
Because Seznam was for many years the only search engine to use the Czech alphabet, it became the leader in the local search engine market. Google has now improved its Czech language support and now provides search capability similar to that of Seznam.
- Seznam.cz Official site
- Google still struggling to conquer outposts
- Ivo Lukačovič on the Czech Internet, media and politicscs:Seznam.cz