Two-day Internet conference in St. Petersburg

Two-day Internet conference in St. PetersburgThe VIII St. Petersburg Internet Conference (SPIC 2013) started yesterday, May 20, 2013. The two-day event is dedicated to online business. Its participants discuss all aspects of doing business online. The conference programme includes three parallel sections with master classes, roundtables and panel discussions.

The organizers of SPIC 2013 are Russian Association for Electronic Communications (RAEC) and TRINET Company. The Conference brought together the owners and top managers of IT companies, online industry experts, PR managers and marketers, analysts and other industry professionals. Talking about the conference, the Development Director of TRINET Agency Alexey Dovzhikov said that there were about 4K participants registered at the time of SPIC 2013 opening. The Programme Committee has processed about 500 applications for reports and approved 200 of them.

The conference programme includes three parallel sections with master classes, roundtables and panel discussions on a variety of business lines related to the Internet. One of the sections is fully dedicated to master classes on various areas of online business.

The focus of this year’s programme is the creation and development of online business from scratch, search and social media optimization, advertising and advertising technologies, attracting customers to your project, mobile technologies and developments, web analytics and usability.

During the plenary section of SPIC 2013, the director of Russian Association of Electronic Communications Sergey Plugotarenko noted in his report that the Russian Internet industry reached a volume of about 500B RUR in 2012 (excluding related markets). At the same time, the Russian Internet industry is rapidly growing. Virtually all segments of the industry showed 30% growth based on results of 2012. The speaker also noted the growing interest of the government in the Russian Internet sector in terms of regulation. He reminded participants of the need to consolidate the industry-wide effort and to form a social and legal coordinated position of the Runet representatives.

Chief Editor of the Internet in Numbers edition Dmitry Chistov spoke about the key facts of the Runet that influence the industry development today. The speaker, among other things, noted that the monthly Internet audience in Russia totaled 64.4M people (as for 2012) which is about 55% of the population.

Some figures were given as an example of the mobilization trend showing that 18,4M people in Russia use mobile Internet, while about 1.2M people in Russia use mobile Internet only. In general, the number of mobile Internet users in the country increased by a third in 2012. Growing demand for mobile devices also contributes to the mobilization of internet users in Russia. In particular, about 3.3M tablets were sold in Russia in 2012, and the sales growth was 444%.

Expected percentage of the Runet economy growth in 2012-2013 is 30%. Dmitry Chistov also mentioned Russian online advertising market (totaled 56.3B RUR in 2012), and the venture capital market that received $792M in the past year. Thus, the Russian venture capital market grew by 100% in 2012, and Russia ranked fourth in Europe in terms of investments.

The speaker noted that the State Duma of the Russian Federation introduced 31 bills regulating the online sector in 2012. Experts estimate that about 50 such legislative initiatives will appear by the end of 2013. In addition, according to expert estimates, about 49% of these initiatives have a negative impact on the industry development, and only 23% of them influence the industry positively.

The Director of St. Petersburg TNS Mikhail Poponov also announced actual data on the national Internet segment development. According to him, the Internet penetration rate of cities with a population of more than 1M people and Russian capitals exceeds 70% (in Moscow - 77%, in St. Petersburg - 73%). The Internet penetration rate of cities with a population of less than 100K people is about 50%.

In the framework of parallel thematic sections that took place on the first day of SPIC 2013, there were sessions on RTB and other advertising technologies, web development, conversion rate improvement, company and staff management, new media prospects, monetization of projects, the development of startups, mobile apps marketing, Internet law and other topics.