; born June 14, 1957) is a Soviet-born British-American businessman, investor, and philanthropist. He made his fortune through business via diversified investments in myriad companies through his conglomerate company,Access Industries.
As of January 2018, Blavatnik was the wealthiest man in theUnited Kingdom, and the 50th wealthiest in the world, with a net worth of US$21.2 billion.3In 2017, Blavatnik received aknighthoodfor services to philanthropy.
Blavatnik was born inOdessaSoviet Ukraine, to aJewishfamily.45He attendedMoscow State University of Railway Engineering, but did not complete his coursework due to the familys request for emigration visas. His family emigrated from theSoviet Unionto the United States in 1978, and he received a masters in computer science fromColumbia Universityand anMBAfromHarvard Business Schoolin 1989.64
In 1986, Blavatnik founded Access Industries, an international conglomerate company located in New York, of which he is chairman and president. Access has long-term holdings in Europe and North and South America. Initially, he moved into Russian investments, just after the fall of communism. He and a friend from university,Viktor Vekselberg, formed the Renova investment vehicle, and then the two joined withMikhail FridmanAlfa Groupto form the AAR venture.7Access has since diversified its portfolio to include investments in industries such as oil, entertainment, coal, aluminum, petrochemicals and plastics, telecommunications, media, and real estate.citation needed
In August 2005,Access Industriesbought petrochemicals and plastics manufacturerBasell PolyolefinsfromRoyal Dutch ShellandBASFfor $5.7 billion. On December 20, 2007, Basell completed its acquisition of theLyondell Chemical Companyfor an enterprise value of approximately $19 billion. The resulting company,LyondellBasellIndustries then became the worlds eighth largest chemical company based on net sales.8On January 6, 2009, the U.S. operations of LyondellBasell Industries filed for bankruptcy.9
On April 30, 2010, LyondellBasell emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in a significantly improved financial position. As part of its exit financing, LyondellBasell raised $3.25 billion of first priority debt as well as $2.8 billion through the rights offering jointly underwritten by Access Industries,Apollo Management, andAres Management.10LyondellBasell stock has increased 103% in value since April 2010. Access currently owns approximately 14% of LyondellBasell.
AAR gained a controlling stake in Russian oil company TNK throughprivatizationauctions, then in 2003 sold a 50% stake toBritish Petroleumto formTNK-BP, one of Russias largest oil companies, where Blavatnik served on the board of directors. On March 21, 2013, Rosneft completed its $55 billion acquisition of TNK-BP. Blavatnik also has interests inUC Rusal, the worlds largest aluminum producer, where he sits on the board. On May 6, 2011, Warner Music Group announced its sale to Access for US$3.3 billion.11
In 2010, Blavatnik suedJPMorgan Chaseafter losing $100 million by allegedly following Morgans advice three years earlier to buy mortgage securities with AAAcredit ratings.12JPMorgan Chase was ordered to pay $50 million to Blavatnik on August 27, 2013.13
In early 2010, Access Industries was reported as one of the handful of bidders for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.14
On July 20, 2011, an Access affiliate acquired Warner Music Group for $3.3 billion.1516
In 2016, Blavatnik launched Access Entertainment, which bought James Packers stake in RatPac Entertainment and a 24.9% stake in Bad Wolf in 20171718.
In April 2018, it was reported that Blavatnik was a front runner in the bidding to purchase Britains third oldest theatre, the Theatre Royal Haymarket. Sources report that the bid is around 40 million19
Blavatnik also owns AI Film, the independent film and production company which backedLee Daniels filmThe Butlerand the summer 2015 releaseMr. Holmes.20He was an early investor in Rocket Internet and Beats Music, helped finance fashion designer Tory Burch, and in 2013 paid $115 million for wireless spectrum in Norway.21
Blavatnik is a member of the Global Advisory Board of the Centre for International Business and Management atCambridge University, a member of the board of Deans Advisors at theHarvard Business Schooland a member of the academic board atTel Aviv University.22
Blavatnik, the Blavatnik Family Foundation and Access companies have supported many cultural and philanthropic institutions over the past 15 years, including serving as the primary benefactors for numerous major art and cultural exhibitions, including the British Museum, Tate Modern (which named a new wing the Blavatnik Building in 201723), Royal Opera House, National Portrait Gallery and Museum of Modern Art. Since 2007, the Blavatnik Family Foundation together with the New York Academy of Sciences has supported theBlavatnik Awards for Young Scientists. The annual award recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding young scientists in life sciences, physical sciences and engineering and provides all finalists with a significant cash prize.24
Blavatnik sponsors aColel Chabad20,000-square-foot (1,900m2) food bank and warehouse inKiryat Malakhi, Israel, which sends monthly food shipments to 5,000 poor families in 25 Israeli cities, and before Jewish holidays to 30,000 families in 73 Israeli cities, towns and villages.25
In 2010, it was announced that Blavatnik and the Blavatnik Family Foundation would donate 75 million to theUniversity of Oxfordto establish a new school of government.26The gift is one of the largest philanthropic gifts in the universitys 900-year history. Blavatnik also indicated the possibility of increasing his benefaction up to 100 million over time. TheBlavatnik School of Governmentbegan accepting students in September 2012, and the new permanent home of the school was constructed on theRadcliffe Observatory Quarter. The building, which was finished in summer 2015, was designed by the Swiss architectsHerzog & de Meuron. The first dean of the school is professorNgaire Woods.
In 2013,Harvard Universityannounced a $50 million donation from Blavatniks foundation to sponsor life sciences entrepreneurship at the university27and named the first five HBS graduates to receive the Blavatnik Fellowship in Life Science Entrepreneurship28. In 2018,Harvard Medical Schoolannounced a $200 million donation from Blavatniks foundation to sponsor research, investments in data science, and the creation of subsidized lab space for biotech startups.29
In 2011, Blavatnik donated to both PresidentBarack Obamaand his GOP rival, former Massachusetts governorMitt Romney.30
Blavatnik is a supporter of theUS Republican Party, and in 20152016 donated a total of $7.35 million to six Republican political candidates, including South Carolina SenatorLindsey Graham, Florida SenatorMarco Rubioand Arizona SenatorJohn McCain.31In February 2016, Blavatnik donated over $1 million to an anti-Donald Trump GOP group.32He also donated $1 million to the committee for theinauguration of Donald Trump.31In August 2017, political scientistBo Rothsteinresigned from the Blavatnik School of Government out of opposition to Blavatniks politics.33
Blavatnik and his American wife, Emily, also donated toDemocratic PartycandidatesKamala HarrisChuck SchumerAndrew CuomoandHillary Clinton.34
In 2017, after two senior Trump administration officials went on record as being lobbyists for Blavatniks Access Industries35, Blavatnik was mentioned in investigations led by Special CounselRobert Muellerinto Russian donations to the administration.36Since April 2016 Blavatnik contributed $383,000 to the Republican National Committee and $1 million to Trumps inauguration fund. However, he did not give directly to the Trump campaign.37Between 2015 and 2017, Blavatnik contributed $3.5 million to Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnells super PAC.38
In theSunday Times Rich List 2015, Blavatnik was listed as the UKs richest person,39with a fortune of 16.9 billion.Forbesranks Blavatnik as the 16th richest in the world as of April 2015. As of 2018, Len Blavatnik was ranked 59th in the Forbes annual list of the worlds billionaires and 27th in the Forbes 400 list.40
Blavatnik is married to Emily Appelson Blavatnik.41The couple have four children, including daughter Laila.42
He owns agrade II listed buildinginKensington Palace Gardenswhich is valued at 200 million.43
Blavatnik is a friend ofIsraeliPrime MinisterBenjamin Netanyahu.44
Blavatnik is also a longtime friend and business partner of Ukrainian-born Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg,7one of Russias richest men, who is close to Russian PresidentVladimir Putin.31
Blavatnik wasknightedbyQueen Elizabeth IIin the2017 Birthday Honoursfor services to philanthropy.45He is a member of theLegion dHonneur.
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Russian-born U.S. billionaire offers to buy Maariv, haaretz.com; accessed February 23, 2015.
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Warner Music Suitors Record of Deal-Making. Ben Protess.
Yenikeyeff, Shamil,BP, Russian billionaires, and the Kremlin: a Power Triangle that never was,
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C&ENs Global Top 50 Chemical Firms For 2014Chemical & Engineering News
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Wilkerson, David B.,Warner Music to be sold in $3.3 billion cash deal,
Lawsuit against JPMorgan Chase, nytimes.com; accessed February 23, 2015.
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MGM bidding by Access Industries, bloomberg.com; accessed February 23, 2015.
Sisario, Michael J. de la Merced and Ben.Warner Music Is Sold, Ending a Long Auction.
Access Industries buys Warner Music Group for $3.3bn – Music Business Worldwide.
Barraclough, Leo (2017-03-27).Len Blavatnik, Danny Cohens Access Entertainment Backs Bad Wolf (EXCLUSIVE).
Thomsen, Simon (2017-04-20).James Packer has sold his stake in Hollywood film company RatPac Entertainment.
Billionaire Blavatnik leads race to buy prized West End theatre.
Blavatnik owns AI Film, the independent film and production company thats behind acclaimed film Lee Daniels The Butler and the summer 2015 release Mr. Holmes.
Academic Boards and Committees: Harvard University, Cambridge University, Tel Aviv University
Ellis-Petersen, Hannah (2017-05-04).Tate Modern names extension after billionaire Len Blavatnik.
Profile, nyas.org; accessed February 23, 2015.
Colel Chabad profile, colelchabad.org; accessed February 23, 2015.
Blavatnik donation of 75 million to Oxford University, ox.ac.uk; accessed February 23, 2015.
$50 million donation to Harvard from Blavatnik, thecrimson.com; accessed February 23, 2015.
Harvard Business School Names First Blavatnik Fellows in Life Science Entrepreneurship – News – Harvard Business School.
Harvard Med Gets Record Gift From Blavatnik to Speed Research, bloomberg.com; accessed November 8, 2018.
Special counsel probing flow of Russian-American money to Trump political funds. ABC News. September 26, 2017.
May, Ruth.GOP campaigns took $7.35 million from oligarch linked to Russia.
Warner owner Len Blavatnik pumps $1m into anti-Donald Trump group. Music Business Worldwide. March 22, 2016.
Weaver, Matthew (28 August 2017).Oxford University professor resigns in Donald Trump protest.
Exclusive: Two top Trump officials are ex-lobbyists for a billionaire with deep ties to Russian oligarchs.
Special counsel Robert Mueller is asking Russian oligarchs if they gave money to Trump.
Brian Ross and Matthew Mosk (2018-02-20).Special counsel probing flow of Russian-American money to Trump political funds. ABC News
Pareene, Alex (2019-03-21).Nihilist In Chief.
Music boss Len Blavatnik named as Britains richest man.
Filipino housekeeper claims Leonard Blavatnik wont hire her because of her ethnicity – Virginia Lim files discrimination suit in U.S., nydailynews.com, November 21, 2011.
Colacello, side Pariss 25th Annual le Bal des Dbutantes.
Clementine, Katherine.Rich List 2015: Kensington property owner Len Blavatnik top with 13.17 BILLION fortune,
Kremlin-linked Billionaire, Netanyahu Friend Donated to Trumps Private Legal Fund.
The New York Academy of Sciences Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists
American entertainment industry businesspeople
Columbia School of Engineering and Applied Science alumni
British entertainment industry businesspeople
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This page was last edited on 23 May 2019, at 19:59