||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2010)|
|Born||April 14, 1957 (age 56)
Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
|Alma mater||Moscow Transportation Engineering Institute|
|Occupation||Owner and president of the Renova Group|
|Net worth||$18 billion|
Viktor Felixovich Vekselberg (Russian: Виктор Феликсович Вексельберг, Ukrainian: Віктор Феліксович Вексельберг; born April 14, 1957, Drohobych, Ukraine, Soviet Union) is a Ukrainian-born Russian business oligarch. He is the owner and president of Renova Group, a large Russian conglomerate.
Victor Vekselberg was born in 1957 in Western Ukraine. He graduated from the Moscow Transportation Engineering Institute in 1979. In 1993, he became Chairman of the Board of Directors of Renova, one of Russia's most progressive investment and business development companies.
After working as an engineer in an obscure state lab for many years, Vekselberg moved to business in 1990. He rose to prominence after Boris Yeltsin's reelection in 1996 as co-owner and chairman of Tyumen Oil (TNK), one of Russia's largest oil and gas companies. He took a controlling interest in the company in 1997 and has subsequently developed a joint venture with BP. About the same time he co-founded SUAL Holding, later incorporated into RUSAL Company, which since grew to control Russia's largest aluminum business and is ranked first in the world. Later, he integrated those and other assets under the umbrella of Renova Group, delegating operating responsibilities to managers. Acting as a chairman of the executive board of TNK, he was instrumental in negotiating and establishing a 50–50 joint venture with British Petroleum in the largest private transaction in Russian history. He is currently a member of the board of directors and the vice-president of TNK-BP.
Vekselberg is now overseeing a vast restructuring of his assets: the division of property with partner Leonard Blavatnik, the merger of Renova's aluminium assets with those of Oleg Deripaska, and the integration of various electricity and telecommunications investment.
Repatriation of major art objects
In February 2004, Vekselberg purchased nine of the Fabergé eggs from the Forbes publishing family in New York City. The collection was transported to Russia and exhibited in the Kremlin and in Dubrovnik in 2007. Vekselberg is the single largest owner of these eggs in the world, owning 15 of them (11 Imperial, two Kelch, and two other).
In September 2006, he agreed to pay the approximately $1 million in expenses to transport the Lowell House Bells from Harvard University in the United States back to their original location in the Danilov Monastery and to purchase replacement bells. The historic bells returned to Moscow September 12, 2008, with the assistance of the U.S. Director of the organization, Edward Mermelstein.
He is married to Marina and has two children, a daughter, Irenea, and a son, Aleksander.
- In April 2009, Swiss Federal Finance Department initiated a criminal investigation against Vekselberg in connection to alleged violations of securities law. As a result of the investigation, Vekselberg was fined $38mln by Swiss authorities.
- In 2008, Vekselberg proxied a deal between Russian and Hungarian governments, buying the former embassy building from Hungary for $21mln and immediately selling it to the Russian government for $116mln, while the market price of the building was estimated at $50mln. Investigation of the paper trail by Alexey Navalny and the Rospil project has found several invalid and backdated documents, thus suggesting a collusion (e.g. the tender held by the Hungarian side was totally fictive, as the building was already sold by that time). Hungarian officials responsible for the deal (Tátrai Miklós, Marta Horvathne Fekszi and Arpad Szekely) were detained in February 2011, but no criminal investigation was started on the Russian side.
- The ultimate bling - imperial Faberge eggsBBC, 18 June 2013
- Yenikeyeff, Shamil, "BP, Russian billionaires, and the Kremlin: a Power Triangle that never was", Oxford Energy Comment, November 23, 2011. Retrieved 2011-11-24.
- Forbes, February 4, 2004: Russian Tycoon Buys Forbes Faberge Eggs