Vkontakte founder Pavel Durov

How Vkontakte and Mail.ru overcame lawsuits, drama, and intrigue to reach a happy ending

Last week, Mail.ru Group, the LSE-listed Russian Internet giant, announced it now fully controls Vkontakte (VK.com), the leading Russian language social network with over 250 million registered accounts and 60 million daily users. The group, which already owned 52 percent of the Vkontakte, bought the remaining 48 percent stake from UCP, the Russian investment fund that had become a VK shareholder in April last year. The all-cash transaction amounted to $1.47 billion.

Telegram Avi Kovacevich Flickr

VKontakte shareholders sue each other as Telegram gets hotter

That the Durov brothers started the Telegram instant messaging service while they were VKontakte executives is enough for a part-owner of VK to lay claim to Telegram, too.