Born a citizen of Ukraine, Mikhail Fridman moved to Russia when he was seventeen years old. His entrepreneurial ambitions started while he was still a student in Moscow. He would go on to become one of the country’s most successful entrepreneurs. While residing in the UK, he led the private equity group LetterOne (that he co-founded in 2013), but resigned from the board in March 2022 after the EU placed him on a ‘list of Oligarchs’ to be sanctioned following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. He has since publicly described the war as a ‘tragedy’ and has also challenged the basis on which his name was included on the EU list as being ‘false’ and ‘unfounded’.
Mikhail has been an active supporter of various charitable and cultural initiatives including co-founding the Russian Jewish Congress and the Genesis Philanthropy Group. He currently holds Ukrainian, Russian, and Israeli citizenships.
‘For young people, I think it’s very important to search constantly and tirelessly until you find the thing that interests you, that you can develop a passion for and makes you happy.
In my case, I’m happy and I’m successful because for me my job is really my passion. I love starting work on Monday, and when Friday is finished I’m already looking forward to the next week with great enthusiasm.
If you are 100 per cent focused on your work or career, with no balance, you are taking a big risk that if something goes wrong, you will have nothing else around you to support you. One needs to build other areas of support or stability in your life – family, friends, hobbies and so on.
The fundamental values that we can give to our children today may help them maintain a true path through this changing world. But it’s also important that we give our children room to make their own decisions and be responsible for what they decide to do.
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