On Friday, October 28, the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation entered the leaders and legal entity of the Irish service for reading books on a Bookmate subscription into the register of media “foreign agents”.
- Alexey Dokuchaev, founder of the Individuum publishing house, in which Bookmate bought out a stake in 2018.
- Andrey Baev, director of the Bookmate service.
- Bookmate Limited is a legal entity of the Bookmate service
Details. Bookmate Limited is registered in Ireland. The legal entity owns stakes in the Russian independent publishing houses Popcorn Books and Individuum. At the same time, the Russian legal entity of the company, Bookmate LLC, was not included in the list.
Alexey Dokuchaev and Andrey Baev also owned Popcorn Books LLC, the legal entity of the Popcorn Books brand, under which Bookmate has been developing youth literature since 2018. In 2021, Popcorn Books released the book “Summer in a Pioneer Tie”, which describes the romantic relationship between a pioneer and a counselor. The book became scandalous, it was criticized and demanded to be banned by many Russian pro-government journalists and politicians. At the same time, Roskomnadzor not found it has violations.
By the way. Due to the war in Ukraine, the Irish owners of the Bookmate service decided to leave the Russian market. In July, Yandex was going to buy the rights to use the Bookmate technology platform in the CIS, wrote “Vedomosti” with reference to the statement of the companies. There was no news about this later.
After the start of the war, in August 2022, Dokuchaev and Baev sold their shares to Denis Kotov, co-owner of the St. wrote Kommersant with reference to the SPARK-Interfax database. Kotov confirmed the purchase, noting that it was his “investment as an individual.”
Background. Bookmate was founded in 2010 by Briton Simon Dunlop and Russian Viktor Frumkin. Then the service became part of the Russian holding Dream Industries, which later ceased operations – the company bought out 51% in the Individuum publishing house.
The Bookmate service cooperated in Russia with large publishing groups: for example, Alpina and Azbuka-Atticus. Bookmate’s international partners include HarperCollins, MacMillan, Egmont Books and others. By words Baeva, the company’s share in the digital books market at the end of 2021 was 10%.
General picture. On Friday, October 28, the following individuals were added to the list of “foreign agents”:
- Ekaterina Kotrikadze – journalist, employee of Dozhd (read her interview for Paper Kartuli);
- Natalia Sindeeva, founder of the Dozhd TV channel;
- Vladimir Romensky – Dozhd correspondent.
- Mikhail Benyash – Krasnodar lawyer;
- Taras Berezovets – TV presenter of the Ukrainian TV channel Pryamiy.
- Ivan Yakovin – journalist, political observer.
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