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By Tim Seymour

Russia’s vast Alfa investment group is shopping around its 25.3% stake in CTC Media (CTCM) for $1 billion, which means 16% more than the current share price.

If CTCM in its entirety is truly worth $4 billion in strategic terms, that would translate to a per-share valuation of about $27.40.

How exciting would that built-in 16% premium be for the Russian media space? But this demonstrates just how avidly investors are anticipating a major hike in ad spending in Russia over the coming years.

Internet vehicles are also getting a lot of attention — watch out for any way you can play Mail.ru or the upcoming search engine IPO of Yandex.

CTCM’s CEO Anton Kudryashov notes how far the sector has already come and how far it can go in the near future:

In terms of ad spend, Russia is already the ninth biggest market in the world, the fifth largest in Europe and, if current growth continues, it will be the largest in Europe as soon as 2013.

Source: CTC Media Stake for Sale: Entry Point Into Russian Media Space?