Russia's top earch engine Yandex has bought a social newspaper service known as The Tweeted Times. Yandex stated that it will be using the service to improve their social reporting capabilities.
The Purchase of the Tweeted Times
The Tweeted Times is a service that looks at news content shared by those you're following on Twitter. The stories are then compiled in a "newspaper" that includes the tweet from the person who originally shared the content. Founded in 2009 by Maxim Grinev and Maria Grineva, a pair of Swiss computer scientists, the service has been fighting to compete with services like Paper.li and Flipboard.
While the exact figures of the deal haven't been disclosed, Yandex did state that the newspaper creation service would still be offered. Meanwhile, Yandex announced the technology and team would be used "to better answer questions about what is discussed in social networks - that is, almost everything that happens around you."
As the leading search engine in Russia and one of the biggest search engines in the world (Yandex, a public company, is valued at about $10 billion), Yandex looks to be investing in social features in much the same way Google, Bing, and others have.
With a news-specific technology in their hands, Yandex may have a more niche application in mind for the service. However, it's also possible that the user information collected since launch is a big portion of Yandex's incentive to buy. We'll know more about that once Yandex starts releasing features.
As part of securing its position in Russia, Yandex seems to be taking an acquisitions path. This is their third acquisition in the last year, having purchased WebVisor (a user behavior analysis company) and Loginza (a sign-in technology company) in December and January, respectively.