Original team

The original R&D for TON technology was carried out by the world-class Telegram team. Telegram has not been involved in the TON project since 2020.

Dr. Nikolai Durov

PhD (Bonn University), PhD (Saint-Petersburg State University)

  • 2013-present: Co-founder, CTO, Architect, Lead C/C++ Engineer at Telegram. Built MTProto and Telegram’s distributed data storage engines.
  • 2006-2013: Co-founder, CTO, Architect, Lead C/C++ Engineer at VK. Built data storage and networking software.

Awards

  • Absolute World Champion in Programming (2000, 2001) — one of ten people in history to win the ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest twice
  • Gold Medals in International Mathematical Olympiads (1996, 1997, 1998)
  • Gold and Silver Medals in International Olympiads in Informatics (1995, 1996, 1997, 1998)

Nikolai is a renowned mathematician and a world-class programmer, uniquely combined in one person. At the age of 8, Nikolai already solved cubic equations. He started coding at 9, and by 13 he built a full-fledged operating system for Intel 80386 microprocessors in x86 assembly language. While spending summers in Siberia without access to a computer, 11-year old Nikolay filled hundreds of pages with x86 assembly code, creating programs such as a Forth interpreter entirely on paper. As a CTO and guru in distributed systems, he scaled VK and then Telegram to tens of millions of daily users. In 2014 Nikolai became interested in Bitcoin and related technologies. His research on these topics culminated in TON’s Technical White Paper, in which he summarized the advancements of blockchain technology and proposed a novel architecture for scalable decentralized ledgers.

Pavel Durov

  • 2013-present: Co-founder, CEO, Product Manager at Telegram.
  • 2006-2013: Co-founder, CEO, Product Manager, Lead Developer at VK.

Awards

  • The most promising Northern European leader under 30 (2014)
  • Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum (2017)

Pavel first gained international recognition for founding VK, which under his leadership commanded a 70 percent market share in Russia, Ukraine and Belorussia, eclipsing Facebook and other competing social networks. An outspoken libertarian, he published free market manifestos urging the Russian government to deregulate and decentralize the country’s economy. Pavel was forced to sell VK and leave Russia in 2014 after a clash with the government over his users’ privacy and freedom of speech.

Pavel started coding at 10, and at 11 he already created his first multiplayer strategy game. As a teenager, he built popular online communication tools for fellow students. At 21 he single-handedly coded the first version of VK. Pavel founded Telegram and became interested in cryptocurrencies in 2013, when he spent $1.5 million of his savings on Bitcoin that he holds to this day.

Aliaksei Levin

  • 2013-present: C/C++ Engineer at Telegram. Developed distributed data storage engines, client cross-platform libraries, and the bot API.
  • 2010-2013: C/C++ Engineer at VK. Built data storage engines and created the custom programming language KPHP for high-level backend developers.

Awards

  • Gold Medal, ACM International Programming Contest World Finals (2011)
  • Silver Medal, ACM International Programming Contest World Finals (2010)
  • First Prize, International Mathematics Competition for University Students (2009)
  • Gold Medal, First Place, International Mathematical Olympiad (2005)
  • Silver Medal, International Mathematical Olympiad (2004)

Vitalik Valtman

  • 2013-present: C/C++ Engineer at Telegram. Developed networking and data storage engines.
  • 2010-2013: C/C++ Engineer at VK. Developed networking and data storage engines.

Awards

  • Silver Medal, ACM International Programming Contest World Finals (2006)
  • 4th place, Top Coder Open
  • 4th place, Top Coder Collegiate Contest

Arseny Smirnov

  • 2013-present: C/C++ Engineer at Telegram. Developed server data storage engines, client cross-platform libraries, and bot API.
  • 2010-2013: C/C++ Engineer at VK. Developed data storage engines and created the custom programming language KPHP for high-level backend developers.

Awards

  • Gold Medal, ACM International Programming Contest World Finals (2011)
  • Silver Medal, ACM International Programming Contest World Finals (2010)

John

  • 2014-present: Client C++ Engineer at Telegram. Single-handedly built Telegram Desktop.
  • 2007-2013: Lead backend/frontend Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in JS.

Igor

  • 2014-present: Lead Backend Engineer at Telegram. Built the entire Telegram API for client apps.
  • 2007-2013: Lead backend/frontend Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in JS.

DrKlo

  • 2014-present: Android Engineer at Telegram after winning a nationwide contest in Android Java. Built Telegram for Android.
  • 2012-2013: iOS Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in Objective C.

Peter

  • 2014-present: iOS/Swift Engineer at Telegram. Built Telegram for iOS (Objective C). Built Telegram Beta for iOS (Swift).
  • 2012-2013: iOS Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in Objective C.

Grisha

  • 2016-present: Cross Platform Developer at Telegram. Builds voice calls.
  • 2010-2016: Android Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in Java for Android. Single- handedly built the VK app for Android.

Kolar

  • 2014-present: Backend/Frontend Engineer at Telegram. Built the Instant View Platform, the Translations Platform, telegra.ph, telesco.pe, etc.
  • 2010-2013: Lead backend/frontend Engineer at VK after winning a nationwide contest in JS.

Ilya

  • 2013-present: iOS/Swift Engineer at Telegram after winning several nationwide contests in Objective C. Built multiple features for Telegram iOS.

Igor

  • 2013-present: Infrastructure Architect at Telegram. Scaled Telegram to tens of thousands of servers.
  • 2008-2013: Senior System Engineer. Scaled VK to tens of thousands of servers.