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VKontakte Founder Durov Sells Stake in Company

Published: January 26, 2014 (Issue # 1794)



  • Pavel Durov speaking at TechCrunch Disrupt Europe: Berlin in 2013.
    Photo: TechCrunch / Flickr

Pavel Durov, the founder of VKontakte, said on Friday he had sold his stake in the immensely popular social-networking website that has often been dubbed Russias Facebook.

Durov wrote on his VKontakte page that he had sold 12 percent of the company to Ivan Tavrin, a member of the Mail.Ru Group Board of Directors and general director of Russian telecoms giant Megafon.

He said that the deal would not affect VKontakte management and he, as a founder, would continue to oversee its functioning.

You may also be interested in: VK Claims Authorities Sought $100,000 Bribe

Russian business daily Vedomosti said earlier in the day, citing sources close to VKontakte partners and shareholders, that the deal was signed in December 2013.

The contract value is unknown, but one of Vedomostis sources said it was probably based on the companys value of $3-4 billion.

Previous media reports said that Durov and his VKontakte team were planning to quit and engage in a new project, but his spokesman Georgy Lobushkin denied the reports.

VKontakte remains Russias most popular social networking website. In January 2014, it was visited by about 60 million users daily, according to data provided by Durov.

You may also be interested in: VKontakte Movie to Start Filming in City Next Year

The website, whose users can upload music and videos on their pages, has also been criticized for massive copyright violations.

In a 2012 article in the popular US-based news blog Gawker, VKontakte was described as a meat market for American men seeking brides in Russia and other Eastern European nations.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Nov. 1


The men and women who dedicate their lives to fitness get their chance to compete for the title of best body in Russia at todays Grand Prix Fitness House PRO, the nations premier bodybuilding competition. Not only will men and women be competing for thousands of dollars in prizes and a trip to represent their nation at Mr. Olympia but sporting goods and nutritional supplements will also be available for sale. Learn more about the culture of the Indian subcontinent during Diwali, the annual festival of lights that will be celebrated in St. Petersburg this weekend at the Culture Palace on Tambovskaya Ul. For 100 rubles ($2.40), festival-goers listen to Indian music, try on traditional Indian outfits and sample dishes highlighting the culinary diversity of the billion-plus people in the South Asian superpower.



Sunday, Nov. 2


Check out the latest video and interactive games at the Gaming Festival at the Mayakovsky Library ending today. Meet with the developers of the popular and learn more about their work, or learn how to play one of their creations with the opportunity to ask the creators themselves about the exact rules.



Monday, Nov. 3


Non-athletes can get feed their need for competition without breaking a sweat at the Rock-Paper-Scissors tournament this evening at the Cube Bar at Lomonosova 1. Referees will judge the validity of each matchup award points to winners while the citys elite fight for the chance to be called the best of the best. Those hoping to play must arrange a team beforehand and pay 200 rubles ($4.80) to enter.



Tuesday, Nov. 4


Attend the premiere of Canadian director Xavier Dolans latest film Mommy at the Avrora theater this evening. The fifth picture from the 25-year-old, it is the story of an unruly teenager but the most alluring (or unappealing) aspect is the way the film was shot: in a 1:1 format that is more reminiscent of Instagram videos than cinematic art. Tickets cost 400 rubles ($9.60) and snacks and drinks will be available.



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