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Ex-Yahoo search chief to lead Yandex lab

A U.S. search lab for Yandex, a Russian search site and Internet portal, is the new for Vish Makhijani, who this week left a similar role at Yahoo.

Vish Makhijani, until this week Yahoo's senior vice president in charge of search, now is leading a San Francisco Bay Area lab of Russian search engine and portal site Yandex.

Makhijani will be president and chief executive of Yandex Labs, the company said Friday.

"Vish and his group at Yandex Labs will help to develop and improve Yandex's core technology capabilities including the quality of algorithmic search for the Russian audience," said Arkady Volozh, CEO of parent company Yandex. "We did not hesitate to go the extra mile to find this rare talent." (Though with Yahoo's recent management turmoil, the distance looks to have been shortened considerably.)

Now might be a good time to join Yandex, which maintains an edge over Google in Russia if not the globe. Yandex appears bound for an initial public offering soon on Nasdaq, hoping to raise $1.5 billion to $2 billion, according to a recent Reuters report.