2012 Mining Billionaires: #14 Roman Abramovich
#14 Roman Abramovich
Abramovich enjoys a high-profile thanks to his ownership of the Chelsea (dubbed ‘Chelski’ by opponents) football club in London, but has long lost his status as the richest man in Russia (he was worth $23.5 billion in 2008).
He spends most of his time in London with model girlfriend and contemporary art promoter Dasha Zhukova, and Forbes puts his 2012 fortune at $12.1 billion placing him in position no. 68 in the world.
The 45-year old father of six could afford the $243 million settlement after splitting from his second wife Irina, but now faces a $6.8 billion lawsuit filed in London last year by erstwhile business partner Boris Berezovsky. Berezovsky, who is in political exile in London, says he was bilked out of billions by Abromovich in a Yeltsin-era oil and gas privatization deal that made both men deca-billionaires.
Abramovich current wealth stems from shareholdings in steel giant Evraz and Highland Gold. Highland owns two mines in Russia and several exploration projects in Russian and Kyrgyzstan and produces more than 180,000 ounces a year. Barrick in February announced it will be selling its 20% stake in Highland.
Forbes reports he “also owns the world’s largest yacht, the 533-foot Eclipse, which cost him over $250 million in 2010. He added a 377-foot ice boat, the Luna, to his fleet of pricey toys, which already included two other yachts, a Boeing 767 and homes in London, St. Barts, Colorado, Sardinia and France.”