Telegram gains 900 million users, aims for profitability and a potential $30 billion valuation

Pavel Durov, the founder of the widely-used messaging app Telegram, revealed significant milestones and future plans for the platform. Durov proudly stated that Telegram has evolved into one of the world’s most popular social networking applications, boasting an impressive 900 million monthly active users, a substantial increase from the 500 million recorded at the beginning of 2021.

Monetization Success and Revenue Surge

Durov attributed Telegram’s success not only to its massive user base but also to its strategic moves in monetization. The introduction of advertising and premium subscription services has catapulted the messenger into a revenue-generating powerhouse, raking in “hundreds of millions of dollars.” The founder expressed optimism about Telegram entering profitable operations, foreseeing this transition potentially occurring as early as this year.

Valuation Soars Beyond $30 Billion, IPO on the Horizon

Highlighting the platform’s robust financial standing, Durov shared that potential investors, including “global last-stage technology funds,” have presented Telegram with a staggering valuation exceeding $30 billion. Despite tempting offers, Durov firmly rejected the idea of selling the platform, emphasizing a commitment to independence. Instead, Telegram is actively exploring the possibility of an initial public offering (IPO) to further democratize access to its value.

“The main reason we started monetizing is that we wanted to remain independent,” Durov explained, underlining the value of an IPO as a strategic move.

Future U.S. Listing, User Share Offerings

Insiders have revealed that Telegram is likely to seek a U.S. listing when the company achieves profitability and favorable market conditions. While Durov refrained from commenting on the specific timing or location of the potential IPO, he did express the company’s exploration of various options. Furthermore, he hinted at a unique approach, taking a page from Reddit, by considering selling shares to loyal users during the IPO.

Enhanced Moderation and AI Integration

Acknowledging the global significance of elections, Durov announced Telegram’s commitment to improving moderation processes throughout the year. The platform plans to deploy artificial intelligence mechanisms to address potential issues while respecting user freedom of expression. Durov emphasized that monitoring would only occur if users crossed red lines, assuring that the platform would not infringe on free speech rights.

As Telegram continues its meteoric rise, the tech world eagerly anticipates its path to profitability, potential IPO, and the innovative strategies Durov and his team employ to maintain the platform’s independence and user-centric focus.

Source: Financial Times