Last Updated on November 14, 2023 by Ben
One of the wealthiest people in the world, Vladimir Potanin, is a Russian billionaire with a net worth of over $30 billion. His company Interros, a private holding company with stakes in firms including Norilsk Nickel and Kinross Gold Corporation, was founded by him, and serves as its president.
In addition to his commercial ventures, he is a committed philanthropist who has made significant financial contributions to numerous humanitarian organizations around Russia.
His career took off in the 1990s when he helped form Onexim Bank, one of Russia’s first financial institutions following the demise of the Soviet Union and acquired ownership of several state properties. He has grown to be one of the most influential businessmen in Russia and the world.
What is Vladimir Potanin’s Net Worth?
Vladimir Potanin is a Russian businessman who is worth $35 billion and is worth a billion dollars. So Vladimir is one of the wealthiest guys in Russia and has been the richest person in Russia at different times. He got much of his money from Boris Yeltsin’s loans-for-shares plan in the 1990s, and that’s how he got the mining and smelting company, Norilsk Nickel. Potanin and Mikhail Prokhorov worked together in business for a while and made a lot of money.
Early Life and Education
Vladimir Potanin was born to a family of influential communists on January 3, 1961, in Moscow, Soviet Union. He attended the prestigious Moscow State Institute of International Relations as a teenager, and this school prepared students to work in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Potanin got his diploma in 1983 and then went to work for the Ministry of Foreign Trade.
Potanin and his business partner Mikhail Prokhorov started the private company Interros in Moscow in 1991. A few years later, he became the first head of the United Export-Import Bank, which had just been set up. In the years that followed, Potanin kept showing his financial power in Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union.
In 1995, he was a crucial part of Boris Yeltsin’s loans-for-shares plan, which allowed Russian companies’ assets to be sold for less than the market price. This method was a crucial part of how the Russian oligarchy came to be. Potanin and Prokhorov bought the mining and smelting company Norilsk Nickel with this plan.
Potanin was the First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation from 1996 to 1997. This was one of his many important jobs. After that, he became the president of his company, Interros, and the head of its board of directors. Potanin took charge of the National Council on Corporate Governance at the beginning of 2003. This group works to set new ethical and professional standards for Russian companies’ corporate governance.
Vladimir Potanin and Mikhail Prokhorov broke up in 2007 because Prokhorov had done scandalous things with whores. Potanin tried to buy Prokhorov’s share of Norilsk Nickel, but he was turned down. Instead, it was bought by Oleg Deripaska.
This deal caused a lot of tension between business leaders, and in the years that followed, they got into many business fights. To solve this problem, Roman Abramovich bought 6.5% of Norilsk Nickel’s shares, giving both Potanin and Deripaska the same power. So, Potanin became the new CEO of the company.
During Potanin’s time as CEO of Norilsk Nickel, the company was criticized for harming the environment. The mining and smelting processes of the company make Norilsk one of the most polluted cities in the world.
Potanin later said that the company’s leaders would work to solve the problem and that he would spend $17 billion over seven years to modernize the sites and cut pollution. Even so, environmental disasters have kept happening in the area, and in May 2020, there will be a significant oil spill.
Other Business Ventures
Vladimir Potanin is one of Russia’s wealthy “oligarchs,” He has put his money into a wide range of businesses. He gave $2 billion to build a ski area in Sochi before the 2014 Winter Olympics and $500,000 to start a breeding program for leopards in the Mzymta Valley.
Potanin was the first significant Russian investor to buy property in Iran after removing sanctions. Some of the things that were bought were shares of Pomegranate, which has a stake in several Iranian internet companies, and a stake in the pharmaceutical business Petrovax Pharm.
Potanin was also head of the board of trustees at the State Hermitage Museum and a member of the board of trustees at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in New York. He left these positions when Russia entered Ukraine in early 2022. Through his charity group, The Vladimir Potanin Foundation, he signed Bill Gates’ Giving Pledge and promised to give at least half his fortune to charity during his lifetime.
Potanin married Natalia in 1983, and they had three children together before they split up in 2014. Potanin married Ekaterina that year, and they had two children together. Potanin is a keen skier and enjoys making art in his free time, and he also has an impressive collection of contemporary Russian art.
In 2021, Forbes Magazine ranked him the 36th richest person in the world, with an estimated net worth of $50 billion. He currently divides his time between Moscow and St Petersburg, often traveling for work. Potanin is an active philanthropist and has donated millions to charities worldwide.
He is also the head of the board of trustees for the Russian Cultural Heritage, a non-profit group that works to keep Russia’s cultural history alive. He frequently participates in conferences and events related to education, business, and politics.
Net Worth Details
Vladimir Potanin owns 30% of the publicly traded mining company Norilsk Nickel, which makes about 13% of the world’s nickel and 44% of the world’s palladium. Over the years, Potanin has made more than $4 billion from the company’s earnings and another $2 billion from buyback programs where he sold shares. He made another $2 billion when he sold his Rosbank stock.
Potanin was one of the most prominent private investors in projects for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. He used to work with Mikhail Prokhorov in a business relationship.
Pros and Cons of Vladimir Potanin Net Worth
- Potanin has made a vast fortune by investing in Norilsk Nickel and other resources.
- He successfully invested in projects related to the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
- His net worth is estimated at around $14 billion, and he has been ranked among the world’s wealthiest men.
- Potanin has faced criticism for his involvement in the privatization of post-Soviet Russia, which many say privileged a small number of oligarchs at the expense of the public.
- He was also one of several billionaires under investigation by Swiss authorities in 2017 over possible financial misconduct in Russia.
- His resource investments have been linked to unethical business practices, including environmental degradation and human rights abuses.
Final Thought – Vladimir Potanin Net Worth
Despite the controversies surrounding his activities, Vladimir Potanin has used his immense wealth to invest in Sochi and other projects related to the 2014 Olympics. He is also a significant supporter of Russian charities, including those that help children with disabilities and provides relief for disaster victims.
As such, despite the potential criticisms against him, it is clear that Potanin has used his money to benefit the Russian people. Potanin’s net worth is estimated at around $20 billion, making him one of Russia’s wealthiest individuals.
In recent years, Potanin has become increasingly involved in philanthropic endeavors, donating large sums of money towards humanitarian efforts throughout Russia and beyond.