Former VK boss Boris Dobrodeev and KupiKupon founder Jasur Dzhumaev will create an IT holding company in Uzbekistan, RBC reports, citing Dobrodeev. The new project was called Uzum, according to the plans, it should include a market, a bank, food and grocery delivery services.
Boris Dobrodeev headed VK (formerly Mail.ru Group) from 2016 to 2021, now he became an advisor to Uzum and received a package of share options. His partner in this project was the co-founder of the Russian company “KupiKupon” Jasur Dzhumaev.
Now Uzum includes JSCB Kapitalbank, Uzum Market, Uzum Nazia installment payment service and Uzum Bank digital bank. In the near future, it is planned to launch the delivery of convenience foods and groceries from shops and restaurants.
According to Dobrodeev and Dzhumaev, the company will combine the business model of the Russian services Delivery Club and Ozon Fresh. To do this, the partners will develop a network of dark shops throughout the country. The delivery of self-prepared food is not considered; partners do not consider this model to be profitable.
Uzum means grapes in Uzbek. This name was chosen based on the fact that “grapes are one of the traditional crops of Uzbekistan, this is an understandable image close to the Uzbeks.” It is also a metaphor for the ecosystem: like a bunch of grapes, it will unite different services.
The main legal entity of the holding is registered in the United Arab Emirates. The partners did not disclose the composition of the shareholders and the distribution of shares. At the same time, it is known that the majority of the company’s shares should remain in the hands of Uzbek businessmen.
Officially, Uzum Market has been operating since mid-2022. Since then, the number of cities where the market has been present has grown to 16, and its own warehouse with an area of 27 thousand square meters has been built.
Uzum is currently negotiating with investment funds in the Middle East and expects to raise approximately $300 million by the end of 2023. The company is also not ruling out an initial public offering (IPO) in the next three years.
- Former VK director Boris Dobrodeev, after leaving VK in early February 2022, became the director of USM Telecom. Three months later, he left this role and announced plans to develop his own investment firm for fintech and e-commerce in the CIS.
- Dobrodeev was also reported to be interested in projects in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
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