Yuri Milner Allocates $150 Million in ICQ Ventures to Invest in Israeli Startups

Remember ICQ? The poster-child of Israeli startups which was sold to AOL in 1998 for $287 million (ancient link!) and later on to DST for $187 million in 2010, Yuri Milner’s holding corp, is now operating under Mail.ru, Russia’s primary email provider. ICQ is making a slight change in tac, as the company announced it will allocate $150 million to invest and acquire Israeli startups.

While only 13 employees were left from the Israeli team (down from 80 at the peak), DST entrusted Mor Yegerman, who joined ICQ in 2004, as GM of ICQ Ventures, from the office in Israel. No deals have yet been announced, but Mor estimates the first cheques will be signed in the coming weeks.

From his LinkedIn profile:

ICQ Ventures is a new Corporate VC,
Extending Mail.ru Group Investment/M&A arm to the Israeli market.
We are interested in start-ups that could grow mail.ru business in and outside Russia.

It is still unclear if the companies who take ICQ Ventures money will have to relocate to Moscow.  More here in Hebrew.

Eze Vidra
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Eze Vidra

General Partner, Google Ventures at Google
Eze is a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before joining GV, Eze started Campus London, Google's first physical hub for startups, and led Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He's an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.
Eze Vidra
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