From a Theatre ticket checker to the richest man of Russia: The Success story of Mikhail Fridman


Being one of the richest man in one of the most difficult business environment is not an easy task and not an easy achievement too. Mikhail Fridman is one of those men who has braved the odds to stand out as one of the richest man in all of Russia. Before going on to be the founder of one of the most famous business consortiums in Russia, Fridman started out doing small trades and businesses relating to finance. Alfa Group is founded and owned by Mikhail Fridman and is biggest financial and investment group in Russia. Fridman is also the co-founder Alfa-Eco, a commodities trader as well as Alfa-Bank, the biggest bank in Russia.

Here’s his life story.

Early life

Mikhail Fridman was born and brought up in Lviv, Ukraine and graduated from school there only. He won school Olympiads in physics and mathematics. Fridman graduated from Moscow Institute of steel and Alloys. During his period as a student, he worked as a theatre ticket checker.

Early career

Mikhail Fridman began his entrepreneurial activities by establishing a “Courier” Window service with a group of friends from university where he employed students from different universities, providing them with the opportunity to earn extra income.

Alfa Group

Mikhail Fridman became a full-fledged businessman  when he founded the Alfa Group Consortium. Fridman was a smart businessman and was aware of the potential that lay in Russia’s oil and gas sector and this led to the foundation of Alfa Consortium which today holds stakes in many of Russia’s oil as well as in telecom companies.

Battle with partners

Altimo, the telecom side is one of the Russia’s largest mobile phone operators and the success was marked by a dispute in partners but the feature if Fridman’s business dealing help him to sort the problem out. Fridman’s business dealing was one sort of experience he had learnt through his career.

The big player

Mikhail Fridman’s hard work and efforts in constructing the empire is too high. He was aware of every condition and his limits and because of this, Consortium is on the list of Russia’s largest privately owned investment groups. The company has been refered as the most exponential companies in the world.

Strong Vocalist

Fridman is a strong vocalist for the rights and powers for Jews around the nation. Fridman actively supported many Jewish initiatives around the country and the world and he is also one the founders of Russian Jewish Congress and a member of the Board of directors of Russian Union Industrialists and Entrepreneurs.

House Privatization Controversy

Fridman got involved in an privatization scandal where two luxury houses formerly owned by the government were sold to two companies for a price below its market value and one of them was owned by Fridman and a legal case was formed on him but due to lack of evidence, the claims made on him can’t be supported and as result the allegations were dismissed.

Vibrant personality

Mikhail Fridman’s widespread activities along with an vibrant personality have seen him become one of the most respected and a well-known businessman in all of the Russia. Also known to have a social image, Fridman never miss an opportunity to expand his empire.

Money for charity

Though Mikhail Fridman is a billionaire and is having four children’s but he wants his children to do something on their own. He doesn’t want to invest any money on them rather he has different plans for his wealth. Mikhail wants to donate all his wealth to charity. According to him, the funds can be utilized for a better cause.


Mikhail Fridman believes that to become major and a successful entrepreneur, one needs to be at the right place and that too on the right time. A lot of things have to correspond and the only goal of entrepreneurship is to earn money.

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