Vekselberg, Viktor Feliksovich


Vekselberg, Viktor Feliksovich
(1957– )
   Oligarch. Viktor Vekselberg is one of the richest men in the world. Like other Russian oligarchs, he made his fortune in the 1990s through controversial privatization deals.
   He was born in western Ukraine into a Jewish family. In his early life, Vekselberg exemplified the upwardly mobile Soviet technical intelligentsia, making a research career at institutions affiliated with heavy industry, such as the Irkutsk Aluminum Plant. He started his business career in the 1990s, when he created a joint-stock holding company and began purchasing shares of aluminum plants. In 1996, he founded a few aluminum consortia that enabled him to capitalize his assets. In the same year, he began operating on the oil market; his activities resulted in creation of the TNK oil company. He is particularly notorious for his extravagant art purchases. In 2004, he bought nine of the Fabergé eggs at a Sotheby’s auction. The collection was transported to Russia and exhibited in the Kremlin. In 2006, he agreed to pay a million dollars to transport the Lowell House Bells from Harvard University, Massachusetts, back to their original location in the Danilov Monastery in Moscow. He also purchased replacement bells. The historic bells returned to Moscow in 2008.

Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation. . 2010.

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