Our strategy in business diversification and key changes anticipation
years on the market
of total income in 2022
We strive to be a partner ready to help with any task without being a competitor
areas of engineering expertise
subsidiary IT companies
technological testing lab areas
technical certificates from vendors
brands in the portfolio
items in the assortment
Russian IT vendors in the distribution portfolio
From a supplier of computer hardware components to a multi-profile holding company
The company specialized in computer assembly and work with retailer networks, but later focused on component sales.
This firm specializes in promoting on the Russian market components manufactured in Asia Pacific countries, especially motherboards and graphics adapters.
The distributor Citilink focused on importing RAM. Over the next two years, it diversified and by 1996 had become a broadline distributor of computer components.
Lizard and Citilink broaden their range
Lizard and Citilink take to broadline distribution of computer devices and components.
Denikin was founded to improve Citilink’s results on the domestic market. In the same year, Citilink, Denikin, and Elsie merged into Citilink group.
A new player appeared, LC-group
Citilink Group (Citilink, Elsie, Denikin) merged with Lizard, and the Russian computer market received a new player, LC-group. This is large broadline distributor of computer components and peripheral devices, and network and office hardware.
LC-group becomes the best distributor
LC-group was the acknowledged leader of the Russian computer market and second-largest IT distributor in Eastern Europe (RBC/CNews 100 2002). The company was also recognized as the best dealer in motherboards and monitors in Russia (Computer Elite rating 2002).
LC-group is still in the lead on the Russian market
LC-group retained the leading position on the computer market (RBC/CNews 100 2003). The iXBT.com audience voted LC-group the year’s best distributor. LC-group was celebrated as the best Russian distributor of motherboards, monitors, and scanners (Computer Elite rating 2003) and the top Russian distributor of computer hardware (@Astera: Rating of Russian IT companies in 2003).
On January 1, 2004, LC-group changed its name to MERLION. In the same year, it made it to the 200 private companies rating as the 32nd largest (Forbes rating, November 2004). On September 1, Taisu`s wholesale and distribution branch joined MERLION, and MERLION-Taisu was formed to cater to dealers in Moscow and Moscow Oblast.
The company grows and expands
The company continued to prosper and grow (CNews 100 2004/RBC, DigiTimes). It represented Russia at the international event Computex 2005 (Taipei). MERLION took the 96th and 97th positions in the TOP 400 Russian companies list (RBC). MERLION System Solutions (MSS) was formed to work on project-based supply.
POSITRONICA and MERLION Home Systems are launched
MERLION started the POSITRONICA store, a federal network of specialized computer stores, and MERLION Home Systems (MHS), trusted with distributing clocks and consumer electronics.
IT Сlinic and MERLION Projects are created
MERLION started a network of computer clinics, and the company’s service partners worked as franchises. MERLION Projects was formed to develop and implement infrastructural IT solutions for the corporate market. This year’s awards included Dell Best Distributor in EMEA Region, and Best IT Distributor 2007.
Citilink, a retail project, allowed customers to buy either on the online store or at terminals on the ground. POSITRONICA came to the Moscow market with two stores in the largest shopping centers. Distribution agreements were signed with several top computer manufacturers: AOC, D-Link, Dr.Web, Lenovo, and Seagate.
Retail projects expand
Citilink expanded to all districts of the capital. POSITRONICA grew to over 170 stores in 140 cities of Russia. 63 computer clinics were opened in 53 cities. MERLION launched a Competency Center and signed distribution agreements with Agestar, ASRock, Corsair, ECS, IOCELL Networks, JSP-TECH ENTERPRISE CO., Microsoft, Mio Technology, Olympus, PC PET, Sennheiser, Sigma, Targus, and Transcend.
MERLION remains the leader on the Russian IT market and has become one of the biggest companies in the nation (Kommersant/Money, Forbes, Expert, Finance). 21 more agreements were signed with Azbooka, Bbk, Beko, Comstar, Fellowes, Hyundai, Iomega, Jabra, Lbook, Lexar, Nanya, Oregon Scientific, Pocketbook, Qnap, Sandisk, Supermicro, Supra, Team, Toshiba, Wacom, and Zyxel.
The company spreads to new territories
MERLION expanded its geographical coverage through the purchase of Verysell Distribution`s regional offices. 30 new agreements with important companies were signed. MERLION ventured into the SCS and software markets.
T-Parts, Axima, Digital Machines, and DNA were absorbed. MERLION Engineering, the company’s support center for partners and their distribution of hardware and software to B2B clients. MERLION develops VAD distribution, in particular for software and enterprise solutions.
Bureaucrat and reaching Forbes TOP
MERLION made it to the TOP 3 Russian distributors of household appliances. It also merged with Bureaucrat. A new project was launched for MERLION’s partners, E-commerce with API service and a B2B portal. Citilink topped the list of the 25 largest online retailers and Runet’s 100 Largest Internet Distributors. The IT Clinic network crossed the border into Kazakhstan.
VIAT’s distribution business for thin clients Dell WYSE was acquired, and MERLION merged with DNA SCS. POSITRONICA, Citilink, IT Clinic, and iRU remain market leaders. POSITRONICA took 1st place on the Forbes list of the 25 Most Profitable Franchises. MERLION received Distributor of the Year in Russia and the CIS from EMEA Channel Academy: 2014 Awards.
MERLION maintains leadership in the markets of Broadline distribution, retail (Citilink and POSITRONICA), service (IT Clinics), computer hardware manufacture (iRU), and office furniture and plastic products manufacture (Burokrat). In 2015, the company opened a unique “Center of IBM Technological Solutions” and returned CompaQ laptops to the Russian market under exclusive rights. Forbes and Expert ratings of the largest Russian companies show that the company has been upgraded by 6 and 8 points during the last year, currently #30 and #52, respectively.
Strengthening the positions
The company continues actively developing the VAD sector, and promotes software and cloud applications. In particular, the company launched a Partners Factory education project with Microsoft, which provides support to students interested in a career in the IT sector. To strengthen its position as the leading wide-range distributor, the company signed contracts with several vendors, including exclusive agreements with STARWIND (home appliances) and Moleskine (stationery). According to the year`s results, the iRU project was acknowledged by Microsoft Corporation as the best Russian OEM partner. As before, MERLION takes strong positions in the ratings of the largest Russian companies – #35 (Forbes), #65 (RAEX 600), #61 (RBC).
MERLION celebrates its 25th anniversary!
MERLION celebrates its 25th anniversary this year. MERLION merged with DSCon, an IT distributor for DPCs and Rentsoft, which provides antivirus software subscriptions to about 40% of Internet Service Providers in Russia. The technical staff has been reinforced by developers from the Velvica project, the most advanced Russian-made platform for selling cloud solutions. Moreover, MERLION has consolidated its capital with two well-known IT companies: OTR, a large system integrator, and PRO IT, a complex customized software developer. In 2017, MERLION held its first IT Solutions Summit, which instantly became a high-profile event in Russia for discussing IT market trends, where representatives of the world`s largest IT corporations, leading analysts, and system integrators can meet and share their opinions.
Cloud Distribution Launch
In October, the MERLION IT Solutions Summit announced the launch of a new project, the distribution of MerliOnCloud cloud services with a unique business model that includes a platform, a storefront, expertise, and a ready-made store. The company also began to develop banking and cash equipment, expanded the product group of related products for household appliances, and for the first time in its 26-year history, added the food category into its range (coffee). In the same year, the specialized online store BUROSHOP.RU was launched, offering corporate customers office supplies, consumables for computer equipment, household chemicals, food, and office furniture.
Competency development: Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning
The company began the year by officially opening with Panasonic Russia the production of Panasonic IP cameras with iRU capacities. In the middle of the year, MERLION took part in the creation of the IT company AnalyticsHub, focused on providing services in the field of Big Data Analytics and machine intelligence (AI/ML). In autumn, it announced equity investment in the Russian engineering company High Energy (OOO EnergoTech), which specializes in uninterrupted and guaranteed energy supply solutions for critical infrastructure facilities, such as data centers.
The New Normal
COVID-19 has isolated and sent the entire world to remote work and education. MERLION`s team not only managed to build a new business processes format promptly but continued effectively supplying its partners with products and solutions under challenging conditions. For MERLION, the year was generous with business events. iRU company became one of the founders of a computer equipment manufacturers consortium in Russia. "Bureaucrat" trademark entered the German market. The distributor signed a new agreement with Apple and now supplies the entire range of the vendor`s products to Russia. The memorandum on strategic cooperation signed with Huawei in October has allowed us to develop our network solutions business and design joint replicable products. Оver 7600 participants watched the first MERLION Digital Day online conference that took place in November. The company ended the year with a loud announcement about a strategic partnership with Sber - the capabilities of MERLION and Sber ecosystem have become mutually integrated.
By the end of 2020, Merlion`s revenue exceeded 400 billion rubles for the first time. The company is actively developing the scope and functionality of its IT division, increasing the number of IT specialists and developers by 2.5 times. An agreement on strategic cooperation with Huawei has been extended, and the network technology has been named as the top priority. The appointment of Dmitry Vinogradov as the Director of Merlion Group Limited, the parent company of the Merlion Group, is a significant event this year. As a direct manager, Dmitry took the position of President of the MERLION Group of Companies.
Merlion`s 30th Anniversary
In its anniversary year, the company promptly transformed almost all its business processes due to the prevailing geopolitical circumstances and continued to conduct activities as effectively as it did before.At the very beginning of the year, the corporate website was completely updated and Merlion`s entry into the capital of Tempoline, a fulfillment operator, was announced. The company launched rus.merlion.ru, an information resource dedicated to domestic software products and IT equipment from Russian vendors, and large-scale online conferences held as part of this project brought together hundreds of participants. In the spring, the competence development center of Merlion Academy partners was established. During 2022, the company announced the signing of new distribution agreements with more than 50 vendors and developers, with the vast majority of them being of Russian origin.The company ended the year with four significant events: it opened an official online store of Beurer, a German brand with a hundred-year history, as an exclusive distributor; it launched an online store of Starwind (own brand); it started the sales of Domfy household appliances (our own brand); finally, the team of the Private Labels division started working. Merlion has launched a new brand in the electronics market, DIGMA PRO.