Dubai’s Jumeirah Islands Welcomes A New Resident: Telegram’s Billionaire Founder

Telegram CEO and founder Pavel Durov is renting a brand new pad within the emirate’s ritzy neighborhood.

Pavel Durov, founder and CEO of encrypted messaging app Telegram, has splashed out on a brand new dwelling in one in all Dubai’s ritziest neighborhoods, in response to a number of sources aware of the matter who spoke with Forbes.

The billionaire, who was born and raised in Russia is now a twin citizen of France and St. Kitts and Nevis, has moved to a luxurious five-bedroom villa on a 15,000-square-foot property in Jumeirah Islands, an expensive neighborhood of interconnected islands constructed atop a man-made salt water lake, in response to the sources, who requested to stay nameless so as to converse brazenly.

Durov is renting, fairly than shopping for, the brand new dwelling. The billionaire is shelling out about $1 million on annual lease–a bit greater than $83,300 a month–making it one in all Jumeirah Islands’ priciest ever rental offers, in response to people aware of the deal.

Constructed within the early 2000s by state-owned developer Nakheel Properties, the Jumeirah Islands community is much less well-known than the palm tree-shaped Palm Jumeirah (the place Durov has additionally spent time), although no much less luxurious. The neighborhood consists of 46 particular person round “clusters,” every dwelling to roughly 16 villas, all outfitted with their very own non-public gardens and swimming pools. The neighborhood contains its personal non-public clubhouse that includes two eating places, a personal health club, a salon and a barbershop.

Since shifting to Dubai in 2017, Durov has resided in numerous rental properties situated close by Telegram’s headquarters in Dubai Media Metropolis (a tax-free business zone), a spokesperson for Durov informed Forbes through Telegram. Durov declined to remark for this text.

Luxurious Property LLC, a Dubai-based luxurious brokerage, brokered Durov’s Jumeirah Islands deal, in response to sources. The corporate declined to remark.

Durov, 38, is one in all Dubai’s wealthiest residents. He boasts an estimated $11.5 billion fortune from his controlling stake in Telegram, the pro-privacy messaging app which says it has over 800 million customers. Durov is at the moment the a hundred and fiftieth wealthiest individual on the earth, per Forbes’ Actual-Time Billionaires record.

Dubai, which has no earnings tax nor capital good points taxes, has emerged as a hotspot for worldwide enterprise individuals. Changpeng Zhao, the founding father of crypto change Binance, made Dubai dwelling for himself and his crypto agency after being pressured out of assorted jurisdictions for skirting native rules. Vinod Adani, the billionaire Adani Group dealmaker, additionally owns houses in Dubai, together with a luxe pad within the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest constructing.

Dubai is dwelling to a number of Russian billionaire tycoons, together with fertilizer tycoon Dmitry Rybolovlev (who owns a $29.5 million property on Palm Jumeirah) in addition to Albert Avdolyan, who made his fortune in Siberian coal mining and fuel corporations, and Andrei Molchanov, a development supplies magnate. Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, scores of rich Russians started shopping for second houses in Dubai and establishing everlasting residence there, Forbes reported final 12 months.

Durov arrange store in Dubai after a interval of nomadic travels, following his emigration from Russia in 2014. As soon as dubbed the Russian Mark Zuckerberg, Durov, now 38, based the social media firm VKontakte after graduating from St. Petersburg College in 2006. The Russian agency grew to over 100 million customers with Durov on the helm.

In 2014, Durov offered his stake in VKontakte and left Russia after resisting efforts by Vladimir Putin’s authorities to intervene with the corporate and entry person information. “I’m out of Russia and haven’t any plans to return,” Durov told TechCrunch in April 2014. “Sadly, the nation is incompatible with Web enterprise in the mean time.”

After just a few years of flitting between nations whereas constructing Telegram, Durov settled down in Dubai in 2017. The United Arab Emirates’ beneficiant tax coverage helped seal the deal.

“Lots of people within the western world don’t understand how a lot taxes restrict their choices,” Durov told Bloomberg in 2017. “You possibly can find yourself paying nearly half your earnings in taxes, which mainly means you’re working for the federal government for 180 days a 12 months. I believe I can discover higher methods to make use of the cash I make for the advantage of society.”

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