Vladimir Potanin is the richest documented person in Russia. He’s worth US$24.9 billion, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index shows. Potanin was named in the infamous 2018 “Putin list” of prominent Russian political figures and oligarchs with ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Despite those close ties, Potanin is not on the growing list of Russian oligarchs – which includes Roman Abramovich and Oleg Deripaska – who have been sanctioned by the West. His net worth, however, has taken a massive hit since Russia began its full-scale invasion of Ukraine: his fortune has fallen to US$25 billion – nearly a quarter of his wealth – according to Bloomberg. Here’s a look at how Potanin makes and spends his fortune. How rich is Daniil Medvedev, Russia’s new world No 1 tennis star? He is the son of a diplomat and a doctor Born in Moscow in 1961, Potanin went on to study international relations and spent eight years working at the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Trade. When he was 30, Potanin met Mikhail Prokhorov, who would become his future business partner. The pair founded the International Company for Finance & Investments and then Onexim Bank, which became one of Russia’s largest private bank at the time. Potanin became president of the bank in 1992 at age 32. In 1996, Potanin was appointed first deputy prime minister in charge of energy and economy Potanin was one of the Big Seven oligarchs who helped re-elect Boris Yeltsin as president in 1996. Yeltsin appointed Potanin as his first deputy prime minister from August 1996 to March 1997. His relationship with Putin stretches back at least two decades While Potanin has not been sanctioned by the West over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the billionaire has been photographed at various events with Putin dating back to at least 2000. While Potanin’s wealth is largely documented, Putin’s assets are not: The Washington Post previously reported that financier Bill Browder had put Putin’s potential net worth as high as US$200 billion in 2015. Inside Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes and Billy Evans’ marriage Potanin also met on several occasions with Dmitry Medvedev, who was the president of Russia from 2008 to 2012 and then supported Putin in his re-election campaign. Medvedev served as prime minister from 2012 to 2020. P otanin was one of several Russian billionaires who helped fund the 2014 Olympics in Sochi Potanin invested US$2.5 billion in a ski resort and other facilities, according to Forbes. He built the ski resort in Sochi with 77km of trails, a freestyle ski centre, a snowboard park, one of the two Olympic Villages and the Russian Olympic University. Potanin said he did not get much return from his investment in the ski resort, according to the BBC. “We were skiing with President Putin in Austria and there was talk that it would be good to have such resorts in Russia,” he told the BBC in February 2013. “It’s more a question of legacy,” he added. Like a number of Russian oligarchs, Potanin is a collector of luxury yachts Potanin bought the 75.5-metre (248-foot) Anastasia in 2008 and sold it in 2018 at an asking price of US$82.8 million (€75 million). The yacht was first put on the market six years earlier at an asking price of €125 million. In 2012, Potanin was delivered another yacht named Nirvana. Who is Fashion Nova CEO Richard Saghian, owner of LA’s biggest mansion? Anastasia and Nirvana were among a series of three yachts that Potanin commissioned from yacht-builder Oceanco in the Netherlands. Barbara, built in 2017, is the third yacht in the collection. The 88-metre (290-foot) Barbara was at one time listed at an asking price of €165 million. The 88-metre Nirvana includes a three-metre-deep plunge pool and a helipad The boat has six decks, which are connected by a main stairwell and a glass lift. Nirvana, which was in the Maldives in early March, is currently moored in Dubai, according to ship tracker Marine Traffic. Another of the billionaire’s hobbies is ice hockey – occasionally with Putin In a 2018 Financial Times interview, Potanin said he plays at least twice a week, owns his own private rink, and sometimes plays with Putin. When asked who was the better player, Potanin simply said, “I am younger”. Potanin was married to Natalia Potanina for 30 years – but divorced over money Potanin and his now ex-wife Natalia Potanina divorced in 2014 amid a public dispute over the distribution of the billionaire’s wealth. Potanina told Business Insider in a 2014 interview that she was seeking half of Potanin’s US$15 billion fortune at the time of their divorce. Who are Shane Warne’s 3 children Brooke, Jackson and Summer? The Russian Legal Information Agency later reported that Potanina received US$6.8 million for her share of the luxury flat the couple shared in Moscow (which Potanin kept) and three plots of land in the Moscow region. He married his second wife, Ekaterina, in 2014. They reportedly have a child together. In 2013, Potanin signed the Giving Pledge, a global charity organisation Potanin was the first Russian billionaire who signed the Giving Pledge , a global charity organisation started in 2010 by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett. Signatories of the pledge vow to donate most their wealth to charity. “I genuinely believe that wealth should work for public good and, therefore, I am trying to make my own contribution toward a better world, especially toward a better future for my own country, Russia,” Potanin wrote on The Giving Pledge’s website. This article originally appeared on Business Insider Want more stories like this? Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter .