Russian Billionaire Investing in Iranian Internet Companies
World Economy

Russian Billionaire Investing in Iranian Internet Companies

Vladimir Potanin, through his Winter Capital Partners fund, became a shareholder in a number of Iranian Internet companies, including the country’s biggest web retailer–Digikala.
Winter Capital Partners invested in Swedish-based Pomegranate Investment, whose main asset is a 9.6% stake in Iran’s Sarava, which owns stakes in about a dozen local online companies and controls Digikala, Kommersant reports.
According to the newspaper’s source, the transaction took place this March.
International sanctions against Iran were lifted earlier this year after years of negotiations over the country’s nuclear program. Following January’s breakthrough deal, expectations for economic recovery in Iran were running high, with the country hoping for renewed foreign investment and a boost in oil production.
The newspaper says this is not the first Russian investment in Pomegranate. Before sanctions were removed, a group of Russian businessmen invested several million dollars in the Swedish company, hoping that its shares would skyrocket after sanctions were lifted.
Winter Capital Partners was created by Potanin in 2015. The company has invested over $300 million and its portfolio includes a pharmaceutical company that supplies flu vaccines.


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