China's largest Internet company, Tencent, has bought 10% of Digital Sky Technologies (DST), a leading Russian Internet investment firm, in a bid that may signify Chinese expansion into Russian cyberspace, business media reported on Tuesday.
The Chinese company has paid $300 million for the new share issue of DST, a major Internet company in the Russian-speaking and East European markets that operates the popular social networking website Odnoklassniki, and also Mail.ru, Astrum Online Entertainment and other assets, DST co-owner and general director Yury Milner told Vedomosti.
At this point, China views the transaction with DST, which also holds stakes in the Internet world leaders such as Facebook and Zynga, as a financial investment since it gives Tencent approximately 10.26% in the Russian company's capital and only 0.51% of the voting power, the paper said.
"The investment allows us to benefit from the fast-growing Internet market in Russia and explore new business opportunities in the Russian-speaking Internet markets,' Tencent president Martin Lau said in a joint press release.
At the same time, the DST owners view the deal as a strategic transaction. Tencent, which operates various online platforms, such as Instant Messaging QQ, web portal QQ.com, QQ Game portal, multimedia social networking service Qzone and wireless portal, has a similar business model and asset structure, the paper said.
MOSCOW, April 13 (RIA Novosti)