Eastern Europe

Russia’s Google Breaking Up, Kremlin To Essentially Control

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Featured Image by Юрина Татьяна

Yandex, the Russian Google, was financed early by venture capital fund Baring Vostok, let by American Michael Calvey, who was eventually arrested by Russian authorities to pressure him in a business deal. Calvey ended up leaving the country after a long imprisonment.

Now the Russian internet giant looks to be broken up, with a small portion of international operations going to the founder Arkady Volozh living in Israel, and the remainder going to Kremlin associates or cut-outs.

The deal to take Yandex’s Russian operations away from the control of founder Arkady Volozh and its foreign shareholders — under discussion since the war broke out — is finally close to completion, reports Russian independent news outlet The Bell. On Monday, the company announced plans for the split, including who will be acquiring a controlling stake in the Russian carve-out. 

  • The group’s Russian operations will be bought by a consortium led by a fund of senior managers (that could grow to as many as 50 individuals). Alongside them are four key financial investors: oil company Lukoil, venture investor Alexander Chachava, former Gazprom top manager Alexander Ryazanov, and Pavel Prass, general director of registrar company Infinitum, a figure known only to a narrow field of insiders.
  • None of the named individuals are under Western sanctions — essential to ensuring that the foreign investors and directors of Yandex can legally approve the deal. Two sources told The Bell they believe at least some of the publicly identified buyers are acting as intermediaries for others who are staying behind the scenes.

The deal announcement comes in at 475 billion rubles (about $5.2 billion at current rates) after applying the mandatory 50% discount on Yandex’s market valuation imposed by the Russian government on all foreign investors leaving the market. At least half of that will be paid in cash — in Chinese yuan for deals outside of Russia. That money will go to Yandex’s current shareholders — company founder Arkady Volozh and a number of other major foreign investors that hold shares through the stock market, added The Bell.

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1 comment

paco February 19, 2024 at 11:42 am

Even MORE reason for the ‘deep state globalists’ to hate Putin. LOL ……. You go, Vlad.


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