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World America 07 Nov 2017 Russia funded Facebo ...

Russia funded Facebook investments

AGENCIES
Published Nov 7, 2017, 12:58 am IST
Updated Nov 7, 2017, 12:58 am IST
The New York Post reported that behind Mr Milner’s investments were millions of dollars from Kremlin.
Russian magnate, Yuri Milner
 Russian magnate, Yuri Milner

Washington: Two Russian state institutions with close ties to President Vladimir Putin funded investments in Twitter and Facebook, leaked documents reveal. The investments were made through a Russian magnate, Yuri Milner, who also holds a stake in a company co-owned by President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior White House adviser Jared Kushner. The New York Post reported that behind Mr Milner’s investments were millions of dollars from Kremlin.

This is likely to stir concerns over Russian influence in US politics and the role played by social media in last year’s US Presidential election. Hidden behind a maze of offshore shell companies, Mr Milner’s Twitter investment was backed by VTB, a Russian state-controlled bank often used for politically strategic deals. A big investor in his Facebook deal was financed by Gazprom Investholding, another government-controlled financial institution, according to the Paradise Papers documents. 

 

Mr Milner’s companies owned more than eight per cent in Facebook and five per cent in Twitter. While his companies sold those holdings several years ago, he still retains investments in several other large technology companies. Among his current investments is a real estate venture founded and partly owned by Mr Kushner, CNBC reported. 

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