Intel, IFC Buy $10M Stake in Ru-Net

Intel, the world's largest chipmaker, and the World Bank's International Finance Corp. on Thursday agreed to invest $10 million for an undisclosed stake in Ru-Net Holdings.

It is the first investment that Intel's capital investment arm, Intel Capital, has made in Russia.

Ru-Net Holdings will use the money to finance software development by its subsidiary, TopS Business Integrator, a company that specializes in supplying IT solutions and consulting businesses. TopS BI will use Intel chips in its software.

The investment company, which is owned by Baring Vostok Capital Partners, U.S. Rex Capital and Moscow investment bank United Financial Group, also has a share in Russian Internet portal Yandex and in the software developer VDI.

"Ru-Net Holdings and TopS BI are capable of high-quality system integration services," said Steve Chase, president of Intel in Russia. "We are counting on profitable work with Ru-Net Holdings to enable TopS BI to supply reliable solutions both for big corporations and the government sector in Russia."

"Ru-Net Holdings, a leading IT company in the growing technology market in Russia, is an excellent example of a business which will ensure successful development of Russia's IT market," Mohsen Khalil of IFC said.

"We are very happy to welcome new investors of such quality and, in particular, are honored to be the recipient of the first investment that Intel Capital will make in Russia," said Leonid Boguslavsky, chairman of Ru-Net Holdings.

"I believe this capital raising is an important event for the investor looking at the Russian technology market and will enable TopS BI to accelerate its growth and reach its full potential."

Intel Capital invested a total of $200 million in more than 100 companies in 2002. Since its founding in the early 1990s, the company has invested more than $1.1 billion in 475 companies worldwide.

IFC has invested more than $34 billion of its own funds and arranged $21 billion in syndications for 2,825 companies in 140 developing countries since 1956.