Leonid Mikhelson

Leonid Mikhelson is a Russian businessman with interests in chemicals and gas production. He serves as the Chairman of Novatek, which is a Russian gas company. According to Forbes, Mikhelson is the 3rd richest person in Russia, and the 47th richest person in the world, with an estimated net worth of $15.4 billion.

Quick Facts

Net Worth: $15.4 Billion (As of March 2013)

Source: Chemicals, Gas

Born: August 11, 1955 

Occupation: Businessman – CEO and Chairman of Novatek 

Residence: Moscow, Russia

Marital Status: Married with 1 Child

leonid mikhelson

Leonid Mikhelson Background

Mikhelson was born in August 11, 1955 in Kaspiysk, Russia. He graduated from Kuybyshev Engineering and Construction Institute, where he graduated with Bachelor of Arts/Sciences. In 1997, he graduated with a degree in Industrial Civil Engineering from the Samara Institute of Civil Engineering. Today, Mikhelson is the Chief Executive Officer, Chairman and the major shareholder of Novatek, with a 25% stake in the company. He is also the largest shareholder of First United Bank.

Mikhelson is also ranked among the top world billionaires and is one of the most influential people in Russia. According to Forbes, he is the 3rd richest person in Russia, and the 47th richest person in the world. The magazine estimates his wealth to amount to $15.4 billion.

leonid mikhelson

Business Endeavors

Mikhelson started his career as a foreman at a construction and assembling company in Tyumen region. He was involved in the construction of the 1st section of Urengoi-Chelyabinsk gas pipeline. Mikhelson was then appointed as Chief Engineer of Ryazantruboprovodstroy in 1985. Two years later, he became the General Director of Kuibishevtruboprovodstroy. He remained the company’s General Director from 1987 to 1994.

Mikhelson then became the General Director of Novafininvest. From 2002, he served as Chairman and member of the Board of Directors of OAO Novatek. From 2008 to 2010, he served as Chairman and member of the Board of Directors of OOO Art finance. 

leonid mikhelson

At the time when Mikhelson inherited the management of Novatek, the company was involved in the building of roads, industrial facilities and pipelines. He restructured the company and started gathering gas and oil production licenses. He also accepted the licenses as payment for construction work. 

In 2006, Mikhail sold 20% of Novatek to Gazprom. This deal was seen as a way for Mikhail and his partner to ensure their company’s survival. Mikhelson acquired $1 billion for his part of the stake, and managed to remain Novatek’s Chairman


Awards and Honors

Mikhelson has been awarded the Order of the Badge of Honor of the Russian Federation.

Personal Life 

Mikhelson is married with one child. Besides being a businessman, he is also a prolific art collector.

leonid mikhelson

Interesting Facts about Leonid Mikhelson

  • He shares his birthday (August 11) with Hulk Hogan (former wrestler and WWE star) Chris Hemsworth (Star Trek Star) and Asher Roth (American Rapper).
  • He was born in the same year (1955) as Bill Gates (world’s richest man), Steve Jobs (founder of Apple), Bruce Willis (American Actor), Rowan Atkinson (aka Mr. Bean), Whoopi Goldberg (comedic actress) and Kris Jenner (the mother of the Kardashians).

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