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China’s Tencent to invest in DST

China’s largest internet company, Tencent Holdings Ltd, is purchasing a 10 percent stake in Digital Sky Technologies Ltd, a Russian investment firm that holds a stake in Facebook Inc.

Shenzhen-based Tencent, which popularised instant messaging in China and operates an online game portal and other Chinese internet services, said it will invest about USD300 million in Moscow-based Digital Sky, also known as DST. The companies plan to explore "new business opportunities" in the Russian-speaking internet markets, said Tencent president Martin Lau in a joint statement on Monday.

The step is the biggest commitment Tencent has made so far in taking its business outside of China, which has the most internet users of any nation, just as other Chinese online game companies are setting their sights abroad.

In addition to gaining entry to the Russian-speaking internet market, Tencent may also benefit from Digital Sky’s stake in US companies Facebook and Zynga Game Network Inc., the largest provider of online social games such as the games played on Facebook or on Apple Inc.’s iPhones.

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(Source: The Wall Street Journal Online)