Trusts for children, not toys
Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich (Bloomberg estimates his fortune at $7.9 billionForbes – in $8.7 billion) is no longer the ultimate beneficiary of ten trust funds controlling multi-billion dollar assets, reported the British edition of The Guardian.
Referring to the documents at the disposal of journalists, the publication reported that control over trusts in 2022 was transferred to the children of a businessman. At the same time, the transfer process was launched in the first days of February, a few weeks before Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine.
According to The Guardian, the amendments made to the trust documents at the time made the seven children of Abramovich the beneficiaries of trusts with assets worth at least $4 billion. However, the total amount could be much more. Experts interviewed by The Guardian believe that the changes could frustrate attempts by Western authorities to freeze assets previously considered the property of Abramovich, who is on the sanctions lists of the EU, the UK and some other countries. So, in December 2022, the Canadian authorities declaredthat they will begin the process of confiscating $26 million from the British Virgin Islands-registered company Granite Capital Holdings Ltd., which is associated with Abramovich. However, newly emerging documents show that in February 2022, Abramovich ceased to be the beneficiary of HF Trust, which owns Granite Capital, and then his children took his place.
In another case, the children of a billionaire became the beneficiaries of a trust that owns aircraft worth about $400 million, for which in mid-2022 was arrested in the USA.
The decision of the Manhattan District Court was preceded by an administrative proceeding initiated by the Bureau of Industry of the Department of Commerce against Abramovich. The planes linked to Abramovich are Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners and Gulfstream G650ERs, according to documents filed with the court. The Ministry of Commerce is demanding that a billionaire from Russia be fined for violating US export restrictions on aircraft. […] It follows from the court records that Boeing, worth $350 million, is now located in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, and Gulfstream is in Russia. Abramovich “owned and/or controlled Gulfstream and Boeing through a series of shell companies,” according to an FBI agent’s sworn testimony.
According to the documents, Abramovich is the beneficiary of the Cypriot Europa Settlement Trust. She owns and controls Wotten Overseas Holdings in Jersey. Wotten owns Clear Skies Flights, which owns Gulfstream, and Wenham Overseas, which is based in the British Virgin Islands, owns Boeing. In April, Jersey authorities froze Abramovich’s assets worth more than $7 billion. Jersey is part of the Channel Islands, located off the coast of Normandy (France), and is a self-governing country. The head of state is Queen Elizabeth II of Great BritainGreat Britain provides military protection of the island.
Another trust, whose only beneficiary until February 2022 was Roman Abramovich, owns a London mansion worth £90 million, but after the reorganization, control of the trust passed to the children.
Back in early 2022, Abramovich was the sole beneficiary of at least ten trusts registered in Cyprus and Jersey, according to documents reviewed by The Guardian. However, on February 4, changes began to be made to the trust documents, as a result of which Abramovich’s share was either significantly reduced or completely nullified, and the share of his children increased in some cases to 51%, and in others to 100%.
Forbes sent a request to a representative of Abramovich. MeritServus managing partner Demetris Ioannidis did not respond to The Guardian’s request for comment, saying the company is prohibited from disclosing information to a third party.
The Guardian notes that such a reorganization could significantly complicate the seizure and confiscation of assets.
RBC sent a request to Abramovich’s representative.
At the disposal of The Guardian, according to the newspaper, were the documents of the Cypriot company MeritServus, which specializes in the creation and management of trust funds. The documents, including an email archive, were given anonymously to The Guardian and may have been stolen from MeritServus by a group of hackers called the Freaky crew. The Guardian specifically noted that they publish materials based on such leaks only when it is justified by the public interest.
MeritServus Chairman and Managing Partner Demetris Ioannidis did not respond to The Guardian’s request, citing the fact that he is not legally entitled to disclose information to third parties. “The main duty of the trustee is to protect the assets of the trust,” Ioannidis explained.
At the end of May, Abramovich ceased to be the owner London the Chelsea club, he passed to a consortium, which includes American businessmen Todd Boeli and Mark Walter, Swiss billionaire Hansjörg Wyss and investment company Clearlake Capital. In addition, the four superyachts linked to the billionaire located in Turkey since the sanctions on the yachts of Russian businessmen began to detain all over the world.
Heirs of billions: what seven children of Roman Abramovich look like and what they do
Roman Abramovich managed not only to actively grow his business, but also to build a family – the entrepreneur has seven heirs. What is currently known about the children of the billionaire? Let’s talk about the most important thing.
The 54-year-old Roman Abramovich has not only serious assets, amounting to 9.3 billion pounds (or about 935 billion rubles), but also a tangible number of heirs. In total, the entrepreneur has seven children: the businessman had no children in his first marriage, five were born in the second, and two more from the third. But what is known about the heirs of Abramovich, apart from these dry facts?
Anna is the eldest of Roman Arkadyevich’s children. Her mother – Irina Malandina, who was married to Abramovich for 16 years, from 1991 to 2007. The Muscovite graduated from Moscow State University, worked as a flight attendant, was considered one of the most stylish wives of the Russian elite and has always been distinguished by restraint and correct behavior. In total, the couple has five common children – Anna, Sophia, Arina, Ilya and Arkady.
The eldest daughter of Roman Abramovich is a graduate of the philosophy department of Columbia University. The world started talking about the girl when in 2010 she got engaged to her lover Nikolai Lazarev. Anya was then only 18 years old, and her father’s helicopter or limousine delivered her to study. According to rumors, the engagement upset Roman Arkadevich very much, and although the couple was allowed to live in the Abramovichs’ London apartment overlooking Hyde Park, the lovers soon parted. It is believed that of all Abramovich’s children, it is Anna who is most like him. He spent a fabulous sum of hundreds of thousands of dollars on the party on the occasion of the 18th anniversary of his eldest child. Abramovich The girl settled in the USA long ago and now lives in New York. After the scandalous engagement with Lazarev, they talked about her romance with TV presenter and famous party-goer Calum Best. Someone suggests that Anya “lacks discipline”, and what she is doing now is unknown.
Arkady Abramovich, 28
Many believe that the inheritance of Roman Arkadyevich will pass to his eldest son Arkady. However, regardless of whether everything will be arranged, as in old English novels, the young man already feels more than good. He is the founder and owner of ARA Capital. The company manages assets, including large blocks of shares, of Gazprom Neft.
However, in some ways Arkady still tries to imitate his father. For example, he is not averse to acquiring his own football club. According to rumors, he tried to get a stake in CSKA, but failed. There are suggestions about the young man’s interest in the Danish Copenhagen. Father and son are often seen together at matches. Little is known about Arkady’s personal life, except that in 2013-2014 he met with the daughter of restaurateur Arkady Novikov Alexandra. The couple even lived together for a while, but in the end they parted ways.
Sofia Abramovich, 27
Unlike her older sister Anna, Sophia did not change her natural blond for a dark shade of hair, and is very similar to both mom and dad. She did not study at an eminent university, but at London’s Holloway College, where she studied marketing, but she mastered horse riding – the main hobby of almost all the daughters of the richest people in the world.
In 2021, big changes have taken place in the girl’s life. Immediately after the New Year holidays, 26-year-old Sophia announced her engagement. The name of the chosen one was not disclosed. The lovers rested in the Caribbean, on the island of Saint Barthélemy, where the man proposed to the daughter of Roman Abramovich. Since then, Sophia has posted many pictures with a ring in the frame. According to her, quarantine helped the birth of the novel, and the acquaintance itself took place thanks to her sister. The couple lives together in London.
Arina Abramovich, 21
The third daughter of Roman Abramovich, Arina, also has a reputation as a spoiled girl, who is accompanied everywhere by security. Like Sophia, she became interested in show jumping and takes part in competitions where horses, on which her father does not skimp, take prizes. She regularly competes in the famous Windsor Horse Show. Many find the girl’s appearance very pleasant, but she prefers to avoid publicity. According to rumors, after graduating from college, Arina wants to leave England for Australia and study as a zoologist.
Ilya Abramovich, 19
Ilya is the second son and youngest child of Roman and Irina. It was said that the magnate would like to see the boy at Eton, but this never happened. Soon Ilya graduated from a London school and was preparing to enter the university. No other details about his life are known.
A few years after the birth of Ilya Abramovich divorced his second wife and found happiness in the face of Dasha Zhukova.
Aaron Alexander Abramovich, 12
The sixth and seventh children of Roman Arkadyevich were born in New York, where the model, collector and philanthropist Dasha Zhukova spends a significant part of her everyday life. Relations between Daria and Roman run out in 2017, however, they still maintain friendly communication, and the father regularly visits his youngest son and daughter.
Aaron has been seen wearing a Chelsea T-shirt, so Roman is clearly trying to convey his passion for football to the youngest of his sons. The web admires the curly hair of the baby. He lives with his mother in New York and attends a local school, but in 2017 the boy was seen in his parents’ homeland – Abramovich took him with him to Skolkovo to open a golf club.
Leah Lou Abramovich, 8
Leia, who was born in April 2013, is very similar to her mother. She goes to the same school as Aaron, and Dasha regularly takes the children to museums, passing on her knowledge of art to them. They say that the life of the children of Abramovich and Zhukova is built in accordance with a strict routine, which is followed not only at school, but also at home. Dasha mentioned that she puts the kids to bed almost at seven in the evening.