Roman Abramovich has amassed a vast personal fortune, but most of his vast wealth comes from state-owned Russian assets. The 53-year-old billionaire owns the world’s second-largest football team, Chelsea FC, and is also Russia’s richest person with a fortune of more than $1.5 billion, according to Bloomberg.
He also holds shares in the country’s largest oil company, Gazprom, as well as in Europe’s largest private equity firm and the third-largest private pension fund, the European Investment Bank (EIB), according to Bloomberg reports.
According to Bloomberg, he owns stakes in industries such as airlines, oil and aluminium, and sold his stake in Russia’s second-largest oil company Rosneft in 2005 for nearly $10 billion. In 2003, the National Reserve Bank sold him shares in Gazprom, the country’s largest bank, as well as a majority stake in the state-owned Novosibirsk oil company.
He also sold his aluminium assets for more than $2 billion and his stake in Russia’s second-largest oil company Rosneft for $1 billion, according to the New York Times.
Abramovich’s wealth peaked at $23.5 billion in 2008, according to Forbes, but today, estimates of his wealth vary widely between $12.6 billion and $16 billion (estimates of wealth today range from $1 billion to $2 billion).
Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich has a fortune of $12.6 billion.
BBC Panorama Report
A leak of documents – banks’ “suspicious activity reports” – that have been called the FinCEN Files and seen by BBC Panorama has revealed that Mr Abramovich is behind an offshore company called Leiston Holdings.
Leiston was taking stakes in footballers overseas through third-party ownership (TPO). This is where investors buy a share of a footballer’s future transfer value from cash-strapped clubs.
The players included the Peruvian winger Andre Carrillo, who turned out against Chelsea in Champions League matches in 2014.
The rights to the player are with a company in the British Virgin Islands, but Abramovich’s spokeswoman stressed that no rules or regulations had been broken. Some have questioned whether it is appropriate for a football club owner to have an interest in players from other teams.