The Moscow City Court announced that the Rambler Group and the American streaming service Twitch made a deal to resolve the dispute over broadcasts of the English Premier League football matches in Russia in pre-trial procedure.
In November 2019, Rambler initiated a lawsuit against Twitch demanding the blocking of service in Russia and the recovery of compensation in the amount of 180 billion rubles (about 2.9 billion USD). The subject was the broadcast of Twitch matches of the Premier League, the exclusive rights to broadcast of which for 3 years Rambler acquired in April 2019. Rambler counted 36 thousand cases of violation by the American service of its rights to broadcast matches in the period from August to November.
As a security measure for the lawsuit, the court blocked broadcasts, and the next day the service deleted all content related to English Premier League.
IT holding Rambler Group is owned by Russian entrepreneur Alexander Mamut and the state Sberbank of Russia. The monthly audience of the group’s projects exceeds 40 million people.
Twitch is owned by Amazon. Its monthly audience in Russia is almost 5 million people – this is 6-7% of the total number of service users in the world.
The dispute settlement agreement did not provide monetary compensation, but Twitch provided the necessary tools to combat pirated broadcasts.
Also, Rambler in December initiated a criminal case against the creators of the Nginx web service. The company was created by a former employee of Rambler. The case was opened after the sale of Nginx to the American company F5 Networks for $670 million. Rambler claimed a violation of its copyright to the program, since it was developed by its employee while working in the holding, and therefore any use of this program without the consent of Rambler is a violation of the exclusive right. Police held searches at the company’s Moscow office and the houses of the company’s CEO and founder, and businessmen were arrested.
Later, the board of directors of the Rambler Group instructed the management of the holding to appeal to law enforcement authorities with a request to terminate the criminal case and transfer the proceedings to the civil law sphere.
Nginx is the most popular web server in the world – it has 479 million websites. The service market share in Russia exceeds 65%.