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St Petersburg has long been considered a Russian “Window to Europe”, but today, this expression has acquired additional meaning since the city has become Russia’s largest software exporter.

St Petersburg supplies the global IT market with cloud platforms, programming environments, speech recognition solutions, as well as a wide range of services in the field of custom software development. In total, there are about 600 IT companies operating in the city and about 200 of them export their products. Information technologies account for 25% of all St Petersburg exports.

The most part of the companies create software solutions and software made to order. The largest IT service companies are: Auriga, Arcadia, First Line Software and Netrika. IT-service developers for Western clients create systems for collecting and analyzing large data and building analytical models aimed at providing support for management decision-making processes.

“In the market of IT services for software development, Russian companies in general and those from St Petersburg in particular occupy the intellectual products niche. Due to such national peculiarities as the propensity of our fellow citizens to more analytical perception of the world, we have certain advantages in the segment of complex mathematical systems software engineering based on big data, artificial intelligence, neural networks”, says Nikolai Puntikov, the founder of First Line Software, an IT service company, which carries out 70% of its activities in the US, European and Australian markets.

Nikolay Puntikov adds that the most accurate global business development strategy is organic growth as new clients emerge, also thanks to good company reputation.

“Sometimes customers find us themselves, as in the case of an Australian startup in medicine. The customer invented an EMR (Electronic Medical Records) system from scratch. He called our office in the USA with a request for development, and for more than five years one third of the Australian population has been using the service developed by St Petersburg engineers,” he says.

In 2019, exactly in line with this scenario, the company entered the market of South Africa, where it is preparing to develop digital solutions for transport infrastructure in Johannesburg. 

As far as other St Petersburg’s IT export destinations are concerned, Genesis supplies its services to the USA, Western Europe, South Africa and the Middle East. Robbo sells its designer kits to schools in Finland, UK, Thailand and Japan. The Speech Technology Center software can be found in 60 countries around the globe. 

According to Russoft 2018 data (the assessment was made at the national level), most often Russian technologies are purchased in the USA ($224.3 mio), Germany ($141.9 mio) and Switzerland ($91 mio). Among the Asian countries the leading buyers are China and India ($90.8 mio and $52.3 mio, respectively).

Original article at Invest Foresight ibusiness magazine

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David Tedford

Vice President

David Tedford has over 20 years of sales experience within the IT/software industry. He excels at being immersed in a customer's environment, understanding his customers requirements, crafting solutions to meet those requirements, and ultimately providing solutions to his customers.

Vladimir Litoshenko

Senior Vice President

As the head of business development for First Line Software, Vladimir heads up business development in Western Europe and Russia.

Vladimir began his career in IT in 2002, when, as a student of Faculty of Automation of Computer Science of the First Electrotechnical University (ETU “LETI”), he began his work at The Morfizpribor Central Research Institute (CRI). Vladimir joined the StarSoft team (predecessor of First Line Software) in 2004 as a Junior Software Developer. As he gained experience with more and more projects, he was promoted to leadership roles.

Richard Leslie

UK Business Development

Richard has over 15 years of sales and account management expertise in the IT and Tech sector. He has worked on many outsourcing engagements with global companies.

David Fien


David is a business development professional with more than 20 years’ experience as a specialist in the acquisition of partnerships and IT/software services for associations, not-for profits and corporations in Australia, New Zealand and USA. He has specific expertise in the healthcare, legal and hospitality industries.