From Russia With Two $1 Billion Deals?: Spotify And Yandex

The major Russian digital players continue to shape the online economy farther west.

In the latest examples…

— TechCrunch sources say Spotify is closing a $100 million+ funding round, led by DST for a $1 billion valuation.

— Search engine Yandex’s long-awaited IPO is coming in June-July on the Nasdaq, Vedomosti reports (via Quintura). It’s hoping to raise $1 billion.

Any such Spotify funding, particularly from a player like DST, is likely to be for the purpose of going global, ie. outside of Europe. The company last month told paidContent:UK international is its number-one priority…

“There are scenarios in which we’d enter many, many markets that would require raising external capital. Or you could adopt a market-by-market approach which doesn’t require further investment. We’re still working out which markets are our priorities.”

DST could give Spotify a route in to Russia, which needs such an attractive service to come along and ween people off piracy, as well as to China and South Africa through its connections with Tencent and Myriad. But Spotify should already be in China now, by virtue of having Li Ka-shing as previous investor.

A $1 billion valuation on Spotify, however, seems quite ridiculous.