The super secure UAE-based Telegram messenger service, developed by Russian-born software icon Pavel Durov, is looking to raise $1bn through a bond placement to a limited number of investors from Russia, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, the Kommersant daily reported citing unnamed sources on February 18, 2021.The issue reportedly comprises exchange bonds that could be converted into equity in the messaging service that is currently 100% owned by Durov and his brother Nikolai.Kommersant reports that the price of the conversion would be at a 10% discount to a potential IPO should it happen within five years.The minimum bond placement is said to be set at $50mn, but could be lowered to $10mn. Five-year bonds could carry an annual coupon of 7-8%.
To pay the bills, Mr. Durov is issuing investors $1 billion to $1.5 billion of company debt, with the promise of discounted equity if the company eventually goes public, the people briefed on the plans said. He has also announced plans to start selling ads in public Telegram channels as soon as later this year, as well as offering other premium services for businesses and users.BOXING from US
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