MOSCOW: Russian adspend grew 13% to almost $10bn in 2012, according to figures from the Association of Communication Agencies.
This was roughly half the rate of growth seen in 2011, but was better than expected, said Ilia Rachenkov, an analyst at InvestCafe, an independent Moscow research firm.
Rachenkov told the Voice of Russia that a year ago forecasts for growth stood at 7% to 8%, but adspend had risen in line with the expansion of the Russian economy in 2012 and the country's retail market.
He went on to highlight some reasons for the slower growth rate, including a slowdown in consumer spending which had forced larger advertisers to reconsider their strategy.
While TV currently takes the greatest share of adspend, Rachenkov observed the "remarkable" growth of internet advertising in the country.
"If we look at the volume of spending on the Internet, it is certainly on the way to outpace that of TV ads," he said.
"By my calculations, the former will surpass the latter in the second half of the 2020s."
In 2012, TV advertising was worth $4.8bn and internet advertising $1.9bn, but while TV grew at 9%, internet was up 35%.
"Currently, we are witnessing the emergence of new sub-sectors of internet advertising, like advertising through social media," said Rachenkov. "This evolution is highly likely to boost the growth rate of the segment and it may then surpass TV advertising spending by volume even earlier."
Elsewhere, Stanislav Povolotsky, commercial director of media company RBC, noted that products traditionally advertised on television were migrating to the internet.
"There is a growing trend of investments from the categories of everyday goods, as well as the segment of premium brands – watches, jewellery and perfumes," he told RBC Daily.
Warc's consensus ad forecast expects the Russian market to continue to outperform most others, growing at 12.3% in 2013 and 11% in 2014.
Data sourced from Voice of Russia/FT/Russia Beyond The Headlines; additional content by Warc staff