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Meet the Richest Russian Oligarchs Who Are Reportedly Very Close to the Russian President Putin

Russia is wreaking havoc in Ukraine, despite the opposition from several countries across the world. The United States has imposed various sanctions on Russia in response to the latter’s invasion of Ukraine. The focus is now on some of Russia’s super-rich who have their mansions in the US. If times would have been normal, they would have happily flown in their superjets or sailed in their superyachts to reach their respective places. As per Joe Biden, the American president, the USA has joined hands with its European allies and has planned to seize their yachts, jets, and apartments as well. Get introduced to the richest Russian oligarchs who are reportedly very close to Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, who will have to bear the brunt.

Alisher Usmanov

Alisher Usmanov is one such oligarch who is known to be pretty close to Vladimir Putin. Until 2015, Usmanov was the richest individual in the country. He owns a majority stake in MegaFon, the second-largest network in Russia. He also owns a large stake in Metalloinvest, the iron and steel giant. Not many people in the United States know about Usmanov’s contribution to Facebook. He began investing in the social networking site back in the year 2009.

At that time, Mark Zuckerberg was having a tough time with the funds during the financial crisis. It was Usmanov who poured over $900 million into Facebook. He owned 10% of Facebook before he decided to sell his stake in 2014 and raked in billions. Usmanov has also made major investments in Twitter, LinkedIn, Apple, Groupon, as well as Zynga.

The Rotenberg Brothers

Before the Rotenberg brothers became two of the wealthiest tycoons in the country, they were the judo training mates of the Russian president. They still maintain close ties. After Putin became the president, he made sure that Arkady and Boris became owners of the large enterprises, owned by the state. He also helped the brothers get lucrative contracts. As a consequence, the duo has netted an elephantine fortune for themselves.

Igor, the son of Arkady Rotenberg, has poured in billions in his bank account, thanks to international investments that the two have made overtime under a network of shell companies. The United States imposed sanctions on these two after Russia invaded Crimea in 2014. Despite that, the Rotenberg’s kept on investing millions in the American art market and kept making transactions.

Sergey Chemezov

Sergey Chemezov, who used to work with the KGB, became friends with Vladimir Putin during the 1980s when they used to live in the same apartment building. Many consider his bond with the president as the major reason why he rose so quickly through the country’s private and public sectors.

He was appointed as the CEO of Rostec, the state-owned defense company. During the invasion of Crimea, The United States imposed sanctions on him in 2014. He is the target yet again and this time, he is not alone. Even his family members are included in the sanctions. As per Chemezov’s statements, he doesn’t own airplanes and yachts.

Nikolai Tokarev

Nikolai Tokarev is a former KGB officer who worked with Vladimir Putin and Sergey Chemezov. When Putin gained power in the political circuit, Tokarev took control of the state assets of the former Soviet Union. He became the head of Transneft, the oil giant in the country owned by the state.

The authority and power that he enjoyed at Transneft helped Tokarev build a business as a real estate empire. He is said to have sponsored a lavish palace that Putin uses for personal purposes. Both the United States and the European Union have imposed sanctions on him following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

Leonid Mikhelson

Leonid Mikhelson was the richest man in Russia in 2016. A close ally of Putin, Mikhelson is the founder and chairman of Novatek, the natural gas producer. Since the Crimean invasion in 2014, he has been under sanctions from the United States.

Between 2013 and 2017, he was a member of the board of trustees at the New Museum in New York City. He owns a superyacht named The Pacific. However, tracing his assets has been difficult. Though Mikhelson himself is not under sanction, Novatek has been put under the scanner.

The other Russian oligarchs who are close to Vladimir Putin are Petr Aven and Roman Abramovich. However, the latter has denied his close association with Putin.

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