Full Name: Rinat Akhmetov
Date of Birth: 52
Place of Residence: Donetsk, Ukraine
Net Worth: $5.1B
Source of Wealth: Investments; Self-made; Steel production, coal mines, telecom, engineering, finance, real estate, transportation, and retail.
Education: Bachelors, Donetsk National Technical University, Economics, Graduated
Began buying up mining assets during the 1990s privatization era in Ukraine; Founder of System Capital Management(2000); Shareholder of Metinvest Group; Investor in DTEK(coal mines); Owner of Ukrtelecom; Owner of Ukraina TV Channel; Owner of Segodnya UA Newspaper & Segodnya.ua News Website; Owner of Lemtrans (private railway company); Elected member of Ukraine’s Parliament for the Party of Regions.
Social Media: N/A
In His Own Words:
I always wanted Ukraine to be independent, unified and strong. I am sure that this journey we will go through this journey with dignity and our heads held high. – ( ITV News’ Europe Interview)
The Ukrainian billionaire is an active member in the political party “Party of Regions” in Ukraine. He was elected representative of the Donbas region in 2007. He was titled the unofficial leader of, and largest financial supporter of, the party with his large fortune until 2014. Since he cut his funding, the Pro-Russian party has shrunk in size. Exact sums have not been disclosed, but they are rumored to have been extremely large. While he has not made public endorsements, he has close ties with Ex-President Victor Yanukovich as well as Paul Manafort. He is currently the leader of the third wing in the Opposition Bloc Party in the 2019 Presidential Elections.
Akhmetov has been making large efforts to stay out of news and media and has been following an undisclosed plan in preparation for 2019. Thus far, reporters and investigators are still attempting to discover the extent to which he is using his fortune to influence the upcoming elections.
Lobbying & Advocacy: 8
In 2014, SCM, one of the largest holdings in Ukraine, of which Akhmetov owns 100% of the stock, called for the government to conduct reforms in Ukraine. They argued for effective public administration mechanisms, expanding the powers of regional administrations considerably, and for increasing the transparency and accountability of the authorities to civil society.
Akhmetov is known to have associations with Paul Manafort and Viktor Yanukovich, however, since 2014, no updates on their relationships have been reported. Most recently, in October of 2018, UNIAN Information Agency (owned by billionaire Ihor Kolomoyskiy) reported that a Trump nominee for a homeland security position, Willian N. Bryan has come under scrutiny for allegedly violating ethics rules by working on matters which shape Energy Policy to benefit Rinat Akhmetov and his allies in exchange for “valuable promises of future private business dealings”.
Opinion Shaping: 10
Rinat Akhmetov owns the Ukraine Media Group, which includes TRK Ukrayina, one of the most popular Ukrainian TV channels. Reports claim that Akhmetov has strong control over local advertisements. In 2016, a former investigative journalist and current member of parliament Sergey Leshchenko said in an interview with Aljazeera“TV stations are used for achieving political goals.”
Furthermore, in recent years with the rise of Ukraine-Russia tensions, it is reported that Akhmetov has strictly censored Russian criticism on his channels. In 2016, Aljazeera reported on an interaction between Dmytro Potekhin, a political analyst and adviser, and a member of staff before an appearance on Akhmetov’s Mariupol TV channel; he says that he was warned by a member of staff to not “tell anything bad about Russia.”
Akhmetov’s foundation, The Rinat Akhmetov Foundation, has aided people in Donetsk for the duration of armed conflicts in eastern Ukraine. The foundation reports more than 8,000 people received help from the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation in the amount of 33.6 million UAH (approximately 1.2 million dollars). He also has donated to animal protection and has funded the healthcare costs of 26 children.
- UNIAN: Kyiv’s court refuses to return Akhmetov’s Ukrtelecom to state ownership
- THE PROFITS OF THE ENERGY MONOPOLIES AKHMETOV HITTING NEW RECORDS, – MP – 24 CHANNEL
- DESPITE THE RAIN, THE SNOW, THE FIRE: THE NETWORK HAS SHOWN HOW THE VOLUNTEERS IN THE DONBASS (VIDEO)
- Dutch court orders freeze on Ukraine tycoon’s assets
- Prosecutors in Ukraine Investigate Ex-Manafort Associates