Vladimir Potanin

Vladimir Potanin | job seekingStudying in an elite school became his stepping stone in making his own job opportunity.

Vladimir Potanin,
42, was born in 1961 into a high-ranking Communist family. He attended the Moscow Institute for International Relations, an elite school that groomed students for the KGB and offices of the Kremlin. He then went to work for the Soviet Department of Trade, where his father had also worked. In 1991, he created Interros, a foreign trade association that traded nonferrous metals, including aluminum, copper and lead. With the capital he accumulated from Interros, he started two banks, the Oneximbank and the MFK, to which many state enterprises transferred their accounts. Later, Potanin became one of the principal authors of the Loans for Shares program, in which the Russian government traded ownership in state industries for loans.

The controversial program was administered through auctions, but only select bidders were invited to attend, usually at the discretion of President Boris Yeltsin's daughter. Potanin was among the invited bidders. During Russia's transition to a market economy, he acquired control of more than 20 formerly state-owned enterprises. Potanin's business empire was considerably dented by Russia's 1998 economic crisis, but he managed to set up numerous companies to shelter his personal assets. He also diverted considerable sums to his accounts outside of Russia and threw a party at the height of the crash for more than 100 of his closest friends in a nightclub at the French ski resort Courchevel.

Vladimir Potanin attended the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), an elite school that groomed students for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Upon graduating MGIMO, he followed in his father's footsteps and went to work for the Soviet Department of Trade.

Married with three children, he is fluent in English and French.

His hobbies include: traveling, football, alpine skiing, various water sports and chess

Vladimir Potanin

His Life Story@Wikipedia


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