Rambler Media, part of the Russian internet media group Afisha Rambler, has acquired the remaining 49.9% stake in Begun, a Russian contextual advertising company. Rambler bought out the stake in Begun for ca. $15 million from Finam, valuing the company at ca. $30 million, reported newspaper Kommersant.
In 2004, Finam acquired Begun from its founding team for less than $1 million. In 2005, Rambler bought a 25.1% stake in Begun for $0.75 million. In 2007, Rambler paid $18 million to acquire an additional 25% stake in Begun. In 2008, Google announced an agreement to acquire a 100% stake in Begun for $140 million but the acquisition never happened. In March 2011, Begun‘s top managers left the company to join Mail.ru Group.
According to various estimates, Begun holds between 3% and 5% of the Russian contextual advertising market worth over $1 billion per year.