Kazakhstan’s elite, in general, was quick to adapt to the changing conditions. Pandemic years weren’t as harsh, as many expected. In fact, many businessmen were able to retain their portfolio and even make them grow. One of the most internationally-acknowledged entrepreneurs of the country, Kenges Rakishev, was more than successful in keeping his books nice and tidy. Mr. Rakishev stays firm at the #8 place for the influence and #9 for the total wealth.
The year, from which everyone expected a post-pandemic economic recovery and a long-awaited return to normal life, brought even greater shocks. The war in Ukraine and retaliatory sanctions of Western (and part of eastern) countries against Russia and Belarus led to the collapse of logistics of Kazakhstan’s international trade and trade and economic ties within the EAEU.
Although this is not particularly visible in the current rating, since the assessment of conditions was conducted mainly based on the results, as it now turns out, of a relatively prosperous 2021 with some adjustments. But for companies trading on international exchanges, this is already evident – Vyacheslav Kim and Mikhail Lomtadze on fluctuations in the value of shares Kaspi.kz. We lost a total of $1.9 billion over the year. We will fully see how the war will affect the welfare of the top 50 participants only next year.
The overwhelming majority – 90% – of businessmen from the list said that the military conflict between Ukraine and Russia had a negative impact on their business or would have a negative impact later.
Meanwhile, the figure standing next to the majority of the top-50 participants does not automatically mean that this amount is on deposit or current account – it is only an estimate of the entire well-known operating business that still needs to be sold in order to get the funds indicated.
In the new top 50, you will notice significant changes – for example, the number of billionaires has grown to a record eight due to the fact that the capitalization of the Ibragimov family companies has increased due to the rapid rise in metal prices.
Kairat Boranbayev (No. 14 in the rating of 2021) and Kairat Satybaldy (No. 47 in 2018) were not included in the list due to the fact that at the time of preparation of the rating they were under investigation, as a result of which the assets controlled by them may significantly decrease. Satybaldy, in particular, has already donated to the state 28% of the shares of the national telecom operator Kazakhtelecom JSC, owned by Skyline Investment Company S.A. and Alatau Capital Investment LLP.
Newcomers to the list
In addition, new participants appeared – 38-year-old Nurbol Nazarbayev, the son of Bolat Nazarbayev, 52-year-old Alexander Deriglazov, the owner of the “Music Lover” network/Marwin (in 2012-2013 was included in the list of the most influential businessmen), 51-year-old Serik Tolukpaev, majority shareholder of Aitas KZ group, and 62-year-old Yerlan Baymuratov, owner of KazFoodProducts LLP, through which he owns majority shares in Bayan Sulu JSC (confectionery production) and AsiaAgroFud JSC. The latter closes the list this year, raising the price of the “entrance ticket” to the top 50 compared to last year from $80 to $82 million.
59-year-old Dariga Nazarbayeva returned to the rating after she stopped holding public positions (No. 13 in 2013), and 48-year-old Yerzhan Dostybayev (No. 39 in 2018), the junior partner of Dinmukhamet Idrisov and Bakharidina Ablazimov.
These and other changes increased the average age of the list participants from 51 to 52.2 years, the average fortune – from $676 million to $774 million, the total capital – from $37.5 billion to $38.7 billion. However, the ratio of this total capital and Kazakhstan’s GDP has slightly tilted towards GDP: if in 2021 it was 21.9%, then this year it is 20%.
Kenges Rakishev standings were saved by his diversified portfolio once again
Kenges Rakishev owns 50% of Fincraft Investment House JSC, through which he has a stake in Amanat insurance company, 97.85% of Fincraft Resources JSC (formerly SAT & Company), Fincraft Group LLP (formerly Novacom Corporation LLP). The latter group includes companies operating in Kazakhstan, Russia, Cyprus, Ukraine, Belarus, Romania and the Isle of Man. Among them are BTA Bank, gold mining Romaltyn Mining S.R.L. and Romaltyn Exploration S.R.L. However it was reported that Kenges Rakishev unloaded major Ukrainian and Russian assets before the war erupted. It helped, among other achievements, to retain the wealth which is evaluated by Forbes at $960M.
Kenges Rakishev’s active participation in charity is not an obstacle for getting rich and gain influence. On the contrary, Kenges Rakishev believes that it is social obligation of any successful businessman. Chairman of the Board of Directors of Fincraft Resources JSC, founder of the private school named after Shokan Valikhanov in Almaty.