Russian billionaires have bred heirs on a grand scale

Russian oligarchs were able to make fortunes that would be enough for a comfortable life of several generations.
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Some billionaires are actively preparing their offspring for asset management, others are convinced that easy money will ruin the lives of their heirs, and preach an independent path to success. The magazine “Company” talks about the principles of raising children in the families of five Russian businessmen from the Forbes list.

Vladimir Potanin (Norilsk Nickel, net worth - $ 19.7 billion)

Vladimir Potanin has seven children. Together with his wife Catherine, the businessman does not at all consider it necessary to protect his children from all dangers, creating him an exclusively “comfortable world”. According to him, it is important not to free them from difficulties, but rather, on the contrary, “gradually accustom them”.

“Another thing is that parents are obliged to control the level of danger to which the child is exposed, exploring the world from their own experience. So it’s impossible to completely protect children from the difficulties of life. But you can transfer skills to them, how to deal with them, how to behave in difficult situations, how to accept some events, ”Potanin said in an interview with Forbes.

In the family of a billionaire, they are actively struggling with gadgetomania. So, older children are not allowed to use devices for more than half an hour a day. And the younger ones are generally protected from gadgets. Thus, children learn to develop their own mind, and not become addicted to artificial intelligence, Potanin explains.

The billionaire always tries to find time for family and children, even on the busiest days. As Potanin notes, his wife taught him the rule that if he is not on a business trip, he should at least go into the children's room, sit with them, even while watching the cartoon.

Potanin declares that he sees the future and his children in Russia. At the same time, the businessman does not consider it shameful that they receive education and new skills abroad. The main thing is that then they return to their homeland, the billionaire emphasizes.

“I will encourage children to get knowledge where these areas are better developed, but come to apply them here. I will do everything to ensure that they stay with me in Russia, if only because I myself am not going anywhere, ”Potanin explains.

The daughter of a businessman, Anastasia, recently opened the Artis Gallery of Modern Art at the Winery. Her brothers live in America. Ivan graduated from MGIMO and now works as an analyst at the New York-based financial company LR Global. Vasily graduated from Friends Friends Academy in New York, and now studies at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University.

Regarding the inheritance, the businessman adheres to the position that children should be financially secure, but they should not be given billions to manage. In February 2013, Potanin joined Bill Gates and Warren Buffett's The Giving Pledge initiative, promising to bequeath at least half of his fortune to charity.

“If you want to make your son good, give him a million, if you want to do badly, give him a billion,” Potanin likes to repeat. In theory, the share of each child in the businessman’s inheritance is $ 2.8 billion.

Vladimir Lisin (NLMK, fortune - $ 18.1 billion)

The head of the board of directors of the Novolipetsk Metallurgical Plant (NLMK) Vladimir Lisin likes to recall that it was the care of his children that gave him the motivation to start a business in order to ensure a well-fed family. As the businessman explains, he is trying to teach his children to strive to be the best in their field, while the type of activity does not matter whether it is “garbage collection, playing football or treating people.”

At the same time, Lisin admits that his three children “have great choices,” which he himself did not have in his youth. The billionaire’s eldest son has long been immersed in his business. His first job in the father’s business empire was the management company Rumelko. For four years, from 2006 to 2010, the son went all the way from the consultant of the asset management department to the director of strategic planning. Soon, Dmitry took the director's chair in the Rumeia holding, switching to the media business, and then joined the boards of directors of most of the transport assets of Lisin Sr.

The son does not hide his belief that the father is ready to transfer to him the management of all assets “even tomorrow”. The second son, Yuri, who owns 4% of the Fletcher offshore, is also involved in the business of Lisin Sr. Daughter Anastasia is still studying at Moscow State University.

However, Vladimir Lisin does not like to devote journalists to the personal life and especially the way of his family. A similar policy of interaction with the media was adopted by his children. For each of Lisin’s children, $ 7.6 billion is inherited.

Alexey Mordashov (Severstal, net worth - $ 16.8 billion)

Alexei Mordashov, in the midst of a pandemic, had a daughter, and now he is the father of seven children. The businessman says openly: he is ready to help the heirs, but does not intend to impose his views on life.

“They must build their future themselves. I want to help them, but I don’t know if they want to do business or not. They should be able to choose their own destiny themselves and live an interesting life. In this case, of course, there will be a very important component in their life - the management of the business that they will get, ”says the billionaire.

According to him, asset management is likely to be competent management, but his children also have a certain responsibility as owners, so they should be involved.

Mordashov notes that his children sincerely want to be successful. However, none of them associates their success with business.

It is not easy for a billionaire to find time to communicate with children. However, he emphasizes that in recent years he is trying to improve.

“I recently heard the phrase:“ No one at the end of his life has regretted that he spent too little time in the office. ” Here is one more lesson. My wife and children are to judge, but I try. In any case, I definitely began to devote more time to talking with my family and to rest, than ten years ago and even five years ago. It is necessary to pay more attention to children. They grow, and when they grow, it will be too late, ”says the businessman.

In the ranking of the richest heirs of 2020, seven children of Mordashov occupy 16th place. $ 2.6 billion each.

Mikhail Fridman (LetterOne, fortune - $ 13 billion)

Mikhail Fridman has five children. With his heirs, he built a "partnership-business" relationship. The only son of the oligarch Alexander Ozhelsky (born in 2000) is not spoiled by his father's money and tries to go his own way. Together with friends, he organized the company AFF Hookah, which supplies steam cocktails to the restaurants Sixty, Misha Fisher, Salon, "Veranda at the Cottage."

“I never consult with my father about what to do, I have everything completely mine. And I will never go out of principle to ask him for money - I already have more opportunities at the start due to education and connections. Going to my father would be humiliating, ”says Alexander.

The young man admits that the father of his children does not pamper and brings up very modestly. According to him, Friedman instilled in him a "feeling of hunger," which motivated him to do something. The only thing a father never skimp on is the education of his children.

The eldest daughter of Laura (1993) studied at Yale, where she danced in the Yaledancers ballet troupe, now she is dancing in the Israeli national ballet. Catherine (1996) graduated from Yale, after which she remained in New York. Now she works as a manager at The Commission for Art Recovery, the company returns Jewish art stolen by the Nazis. Nika (2006) lives and studies in Moscow. A year ago, Friedman had another daughter, whose name is not called. As for Alexander, he graduated from the British Sevenoaks school and returned from London to Moscow. Because of the coronavirus, he postponed admission to the Stern business school (USA) and began to work closely on new business - now he supplies Love Is chewing gum and Morning Care hangover products to the stores of X5 Retail Group and Magnit.

In theory, Fridman now has $ 2.8 billion of inheritance per child. But in 2016, Mikhail Fridman publicly stated: children will not receive his billions. At the same time, he added that he was also not going to attract heirs to work in Alfa Group.

“I’m not a fan of making public promises of this kind, but I can say that I made a decision - my fortune will go to charity. The worst thing I could do for my children is to give them a large amount of money, ”the businessman emphasizes.

Roman Avdeev (Rossium, net worth - $ 0.75 billion)

Roman Avdeev, despite a decent condition, is not among the leaders of the Forbes list ($ 750 million, 124th line). However, in the ranking of the most large businessmen in the country, he wins with a huge margin. Together with his wife, he brings up 23 children, of whom 17 are adopted.

The education and instilling of family values ​​Avdeev pays key attention.

"I never act from the perspective of" I'm an adult and strong, so I'm right. " The formula is simple: my children should know what is good and what is bad. But I will not impose anything: when they grow up, they will make their own choice, ”says the businessman.

According to him, all 23 children are well acquainted with the word "no." So, in a family, for example, there is only one iPad - the head of the family: “When they ask him to play, I give when I do not need him. If necessary - I do not give. Everything is simple and natural. ”

According to Avdeev, it is important to educate children in a thrifty, respectful attitude to things. Maltreatment leads to damage to things. But the spouses are in no hurry to buy a replacement for them: “Once we arrived at the cottage, and it turned out that one of the sons had forgotten the change of clothes in Moscow. And all week every evening he washed his clothes. “Children do not need to be protected from minor troubles, they do not need to create greenhouse conditions, and they are overly tutored.”

Pocket money in Avdeev’s children appears at school age and they are spent, as a rule, in the dining room. As the businessman notes, children can spend money on their own, but there is one condition: first a normal lunch, and only then chips.

Regarding the inheritance, Avdeev emphasizes: he does not intend to transfer either business or money. According to the entrepreneur, the tradition of transferring the case by inheritance is fundamentally wrong.

“If you bring it to the point of absurdity, it turns out that an adult child needs to continue to feed, drink, entertain. Modern society can allow this. You do not need to transfer the business for this. It is enough to instruct the child to be entertained, watered, fed. Obviously, this is not the future that we want for our children, ”Avdeev concluded.

Theoretically, at the moment, each of the 23 children of Roman Avdeev has a share of 32.6 million dollars from the inheritance.