Yandex Announces New Machine Intelligence and Research Division

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Misha Bilenko joins Yandex to head new division and bolster AI

Yandex, a technology company that builds intelligent products and services powered by machine learning, announced today the creation of its Machine Intelligence and Research (MIR) division. The MIR division will function as a unified platform within the company to foster machine learning innovation.

The MIR division brings together Yandex’s core machine learning capabilities, focusing on AI-centered products: speech, machine translation, vision and machine learning platform. These teams have historically worked to power many of Yandex’s products and services – but they have never worked as a single unit, until now.

Yandex has appointed Misha Bilenko to lead this team of talented machine learning experts and practitioners. Prior to joining Yandex, Misha spent 10 years at Microsoft where he led their Machine Learning Algorithms team and worked in the Machine Learning Group for Microsoft Research. Misha brings a combination of research expertise, machine learning knowledge and experience working with enterprise businesses, as well as building consumer products.

“I am honored to join the Machine Intelligence and Research division at Yandex,” said Misha Bilenko. “Yandex has a strong reputation in the machine learning field for its innovation, data scientists and advanced products. I’m excited to work with such an inspiring group of people building the next generation of intelligent products and services.”

Machine learning powers more than 70% of Yandex’s products and services. The new division will bring an increased focus on improving natural processing and computer vision to ultimately enhance applications and devices. The division will expand research in all areas in advance of more long-term projects.

Yandex CTO, Mikhail Parakhin, who led this initiative said, “We are really optimistic about the new dynamics and value the Machine Intelligence and Research division will bring to Yandex. As our AI capabilities grow and push the technology limits to the human level, we see a lot of potential in consolidating our teams to cultivate innovation across all of our products and services.” He continued, “Yandex has some of the most talented engineers in the world and an experienced leader like Bilenko will not only drive the continued advancement of our technologies, but will help bring them to market as well.”

About Yandex
Yandex is a technology company that builds intelligent products and services powered by machine learning. Our goal is to help consumers and businesses better navigate the online and offline world. Since 1997, we have delivered world-class, locally relevant search and information services. Additionally, we have developed market-leading on-demand transportation services, navigation products, and other mobile applications for millions of consumers across the globe.  Yandex, which has 17 offices worldwide, has been listed on the NASDAQ since 2011.

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