Mubadala, Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners invest $150m in messenging app Telegram
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Mubadala, Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners invest $150m in messenging app Telegram

Mubadala, Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners invest $150m in messenging app Telegram

Telegram, with its global headquarters located in the UAE, has over 500 million monthly active users

Telegram Messaging App

Abu Dhabi-based sovereign investor Mubadala Investment Company and Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners have invested a combined $150m in social media platform Telegram.

Mubadala invested $75m in 5-year pre-IPO convertible bonds, while Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners invested the remaining $75m.

Telegram has evolved into a fully-fledged social media platform with its global headquarters in the UAE. It was launched in 2013 by brothers Pavel and Nikolai Durov as a secure messaging app utilising end-to-end encryption.

Telegram has become one of the 10 most downloaded apps in the world with over 500 million monthly active users. It will open an office in Abu Dhabi Global Market as a launchpad for global growth.

“Telegram’s user base has reached a critical mass that places it amongst global tech giants,” said Faris Sohail Faris Al Mazrui, head of Mubadala’s Russia and CIS Investment Programme.

“We believe that Telegram is well-positioned for an inflection point that will transform it into a leading global technology company. The company represents a very promising investment opportunity for Mubadala and will sit well within our wider portfolio of pioneering companies looking to transform their respective industries. Our investment in Telegram establishes a strategic partnership for us to further strengthen Abu Dhabi’s technology ecosystem as well as bring new levels of tech skills and talent to the capital.”

Pavel Durov, founder and CEO of Telegram, added: “We are honoured by the $150m investment into Telegram from Mubadala and Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners. We look forward to developing this strategic partnership to continue our growth in the MENA region and globally.”

James Munce, CFO and COO of Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners, said: “Over the past seven years, Telegram usage has grown from zero to 500 million monthly active users. This demonstrates the management team’s unshakeable dedication to building a platform centered around privacy and user experience. We believe this creates a strong value proposition and will be a focal point for social media platforms and a new era of messaging.”

In recent years, Mubadala has been expanding its focus on the technology sector through a strategy of direct and fund-of-fund investing from early-stage venture capital to growth.

Mubadala invested $1.2bn in digital upstart Jio Platforms Ltd last year.

Read: Ambani’s Jio platforms sells $1.2bn stake to Mubadala

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