By Abijah Keru
The fourth child of Rubin Steinmetz, Beny Steinmetz was born in Netanya, Israel in 1956. He inherited his father’s company Steinmetz Diamond Group based in Geneva Switzerland and is the founder of Beny Steinmetz Group Resources (BSGR), which is also based in Geneva. He currently plays an advisory role to the company’s Board of Directors.
In 2008, BSGR won an exploration permit in The Republic of Guinea, which was valid for three years. This permit was given to them after the Guinean government under President Lasana Conte ordered the Rio Tinto Group, a British- Australian mining company, which originally had the permit to relinquish it.
He currently stated his plans to sue the NGO Global Witness for claiming that he had wrongly obtained the rights to The West African property. The U.S Justice Department is also investigating BSGR's acquisition of the rights to extract half of the iron ore deposits at Simandou due to concerns about corruption and bribery. He sold 51% of the permit to Brazilian mining multinational Vale for $2.5 billion but he only pocketed $500 million from the deal.
BSGR wholly owns the Sierra Leonean diamond mining company Koidu Holdings S.A. This acquisition was done in 2007 and it had initially operated as a joint venture between Energem Resources Inc. and Magma Diamond Resources, which is also a BSG subsidiary. He founded STI Ventures NV in 1997. The company is a venture capital firm, which invests in Israeli startup companies
Steinmetz, through STI Ventures, acquired the Canadian internet and Telecommunications Company Tucows Inc. in 1999. Together with investment firm IMR, they acquired the firm Cunico, which is a United States based mining and metals company. He founded the now defunct Nikanor Plc, which was a holding company for Global Enterprises Corporate and was listed on The London Stock Exchange. Nikanor was acquired and subsequently merged with Katanga mining in 2008.
His real estate ventures are in the form of his company, Scorpio, which owns real estate in Kazakhstan, Russia and Eastern Europe. He is also an investor in the Canadian resource company Gabriel Resources ltd. As a philanthropist, together with his wife, Beny Steinmetz , oversee the Beny and Agnes Steinmetz Foundation which donates to schools, hospitals, army units and the arts. With a net worth of $4.1 Billion, he currently resides in Geneva with his wife and four children.
Abijah is a journalism student who has a great passion for writing. She enjoys penning down her thoughts and sharing them with the world.