Telegram unblocking did not affect Viber’s Russian audience — CEO

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MOSCOW, June 9. /TASS/. Lifting the block on the Telegram messenger has not impacted the audience of Viber in Russia, CEO of Rakuten Viber Djamel Agaoua told TASS in an interview.

“You will be probably surprised but cancellation of Telegram blocking has not actually had an influence on us,” the CEO said.

Russian users normally install several messengers in their smartphones, for interaction with colleagues, family, and friends, Agaoua noted.

“Those using Viber when Telegram was ‘in disgrace’ continue using it now. We even have incremental growth in this regard – in 2019, according to Deloitte, Viber’s penetration in Russia was 61% and it is 62% in 2020,” he added.

Telegram was unblocked in Russia in 2020.