Tech news from around the web:

  • Spotify is in the process of closing a financing that values the European streaming music start-up at about $1bn, according to TechCrunch. DST, the venture firm that has backed Facebook, Groupon and Zynga, is said to be leading the deal.

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Results from Facebook pages will soon begin appearing in Yandex, the leading search engine in Russia. Yandex.ru will also get a Facebook widget on its homepage.

It’s another example of search engines gaining access to the growing trove of information on Facebook’s social graph, and making search a bit more social. Just two weeks ago, Facebook deepened its ties with Microsoft’s search engine, Bing.

But the partnership also puts a wrinkle in Facebook’s relationship with investor Mail.ru (formerly known as Digital Sky Technologies). Mail.ru and Yandex are rivals, competing aggressively for eyeballs in Russia’s booming internet market. Read more

Social gaming company Zynga seems attached to Facebook at the hip.

The vast majority of Zynga’s 120m monthly users come from Facebook, and the slightest change in the Facebook news feed can have a major impact on how Zynga promotes its games.

As of December, Zynga and Facebook even share the same investors.

Mark Pincus, Zynga’s chief executive, sat down with the FT to talk about Facebook, the iPad and the future of social gaming. Read more

Unlike a certain other internet mogul we could name, Mark Zuckerberg hasn’t actually been to Russia – though not for lack of trying.

When we caught up with him to talk about Russian firm DST’s $200m investment in Facebook (our earlier coverage is here and here), he confessed to having tried – and failed – to get into Russia when he took time off last year to travel around Europe.

Mr Zuckerberg’s description of what happened sounds like something that any other 20-something ex-college student on a European backpacking tour could relate to (even if they don’t own their own internet companies.) Read more

  • Facebook accepted a $200m investment from Digital Sky Technologies, a private Russian internet investment group, valuing the fast-growing social network’s preferred stock at $10bn. The unlikely union gives Facebook an additional cash cushion, but the $10bn valuation is a come down. Just a year and a half ago, Microsoft invested $240m on similar terms, but valued Facebook’s preferred stock at $15bn.
  • Psystar, the Florida company that was making unauthorised clones of Apple computers, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The move puts at least a temporary end to Apple’s lawsuit against the company, and could indicate that Psystar’s backers have pulled out, anticipating a victory by Apple in court.

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