Top 5 Richest People in Russia

Kremlin iStock

Russia is the largest country in the world located in the Northeastern Europe and Northern Asia. The private sector makes a major contribution to the country’s economy. Most people in the country have successfully ventured into private business making the country among the richest in the world. Metal Business is one of the most successful business ventures in Russia. Other common business ventures are telecommunication, shareholding, nickel, and steel mining. 

Below is a list of the top 5 richest people in Russia according to Forbes Magazine’s 2015 ranking of the World’s Billionaires

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1. Vladimir Potanin: $15.4 Billion

Vladimir PotaninLe Monde


Vladimir Potanin has a Bachelor of Arts/Science from Moscow Institute of International Relations. He is the CEO and co-owner of Norilsk Nickel and Oil Company that also mines nickel and palladium. The 54-year-old is a former employee of the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations, now Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation where he met his business partner, Mikhail Prokhorov. They both took control of the Norilsk Nickel and Oil Company Sidanco, but Prokhorov later left Potanin as the sole owner of the company. He constructed The Rosa Hutor Ski Resort, which was used for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi. His assets are managed by Interros.

2. Mikhail Fridman: $14.6 Billion

Mikhail Fridmanncpr


Mikhail Fridman was born in 1964 in Lviv in Ukraine. He has a Bachelor of Arts/Science from the Moscow Institute of Steel and Alloys. His business net worth is derived from the telecom business, oil and banking. He is the chairman of the Alfa Group, one of the largest private investment groups in Russia. He co-founded the group with his college friends Alexei Kuzmichov and German Khan. Alfa Group controls Alfa Bank, A1 Group, Alfastrakhovanie Group and Rosvodokanal Group.

3. Alisher Usmanov: $14.4 Billion

Alisher UsmanovEuro Sport


Alisher Usmanov, 61, was born in Uzbekistan but later moved to Russia. Usmanov has a Masters of Law from the Moscow Institute of International Relations. His wealth comes from telecoms, investments, steel and mining. He made his first fortune in metals, and since then he has transformed his investments into Telecom and Startup industries. Usmanov owns Metalloinvest, which is among the largest Hot Briquetted Iron (HBI) and iron ore producers and suppliers in the world. He also has stakes in Arsenal Football Club and a 10% share in Facebook.

4. Viktor Vekselberg: $14.2 Billion

Viktor VekselbergFinancial Post


Viktor Vekselberg, 57, was born in Moscow, Russia. Vekselberg has a Bachelor of Arts/Science from the Moscow state University of Railway Engineering. He made his first million from selling scrap copper from worn out cables. He is the founder of Havel Company. He bought 25% of the Swiss Steel Company, Schmolz +Bickenbach. In 2014, Vekselberg bought Octomatics, which is an Italian Company that makes software for insurance companies. He has stakes in the Bank of Cyprus, Dresser-Rand and also has interests in utilities, chemicals and telecoms.

5. Alexey Mordashov: $ 13.0 Billion

Alexey Mordashov:Multimedia


Alexey Mordashov, 49, is has a Bachelor of Arts/ Science and Master of Business Administration from the University of Northumbria. His parents were mill workers. He is one of the founders of Severstal, which is a giant Steel and Mining Company. Severstal has other plants in Columbus, MS and Dearborn, MI. In 2013, Mordashov and Yuri Kovalchuk bought 50% shares of the fourth largest cellular operator, Tele2Russia. He also increased his stake to 25% in the Siemens Company in 2011.

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From the Forbes Magazine 2015 ranking of the richest billionaires, other billionaires in Russia are Vagit Alekperov with a net worth of $12.2 Billion, Leonid Mikhelson ( $11.7 Billion) Gennady Timchenko ( $10.7 Billion) and Mikhail Prokhorov ($9.9 Billion).