Russian Oligarchs

Igor Altushkin:  Russian Oligarch/Trader Backing Metallurgical Ventures and the Urals Battalion

Early Life and Birth of Igor Altushkin

Igor Altushkin, one of the prominent Russian Oligarchs, was born on September 10, 1970, in Yekaterinburg. This city, with its rich historical and cultural significance, became the backdrop for the beginning of Altushkin’s journey. As the birthplace of numerous influential figures, Yekaterinburg added Altushkin’s name to its narrative.

Altushkin’s life unfolded against the industrial and innovative backdrop of the Ural region. His birthdate serves as a marker for the commencement of a journey that has significantly impacted Russia’s economic landscape.

Последние 50 миллионов. Игорь Алтушкин помог закрыть сбор на лечение ...

Born under the Ural sky, Altushkin’s life is intertwined with the enduring spirit of his birthplace. His story, deeply embedded in the cultural heritage of Yekaterinburg, contributes to the city’s historical tapestry.

As the sun set on September 10, 1970, in Yekaterinburg, it marked the beginning of Altushkin’s trajectory—a journey that has spanned local and global stages. His pursuits in business, philanthropy, and societal contributions, akin to the Ural River meandering through the landscape, have found their course in intricate terrains.

In the expansive history of Yekaterinburg, Altushkin’s birth serves as a prologue, setting the stage for a life that has left a lasting impact on the landscape of Russian prominence.

Igor Altushkin’s Business Venture

Igor Altushkin’s Diverse Business Ventures: Architect of Russian Copper Company’s Ascendancy

Igor Altushkin with president putin

Igor Altushkin stands as the visionary founder and predominant shareholder of JSC “Russian Copper Company” (RMC), a cornerstone in his expansive portfolio of wealth accumulation and entrepreneurial endeavors. This distinguished oligarch extends his influence by holding substantial shares in the Public Joint Stock Company “The Ural Bank for Reconstruction and Development” and venturing into the establishment of sports and patriotic clubs.

The genesis of Altushkin’s influential journey dates back to 2004 when he spearheaded the inception of the Russian Copper Company, headquartered in Yekaterinburg. Evolving over the years, the company has solidified its position as Russia’s third-largest copper producer, operating robust mining and metallurgical plants not only within Russia but also in neighboring Kazakhstan. Forbes estimates underscore Altushkin’s financial eminence, pegging his wealth at an impressive $3.4 billion.

In the intricate landscape of metallurgy, Altushkin has faced formidable challenges, particularly in the wake of Western sanctions linked to the Ukraine invasion. However, his unwavering resilience and strategic acumen have not only weathered these challenges but also elevated him to the notable rank of the 48th-richest person in Russia. Altushkin’s enduring influence in the business realm transcends adversity, positioning him as a key player in the dynamic tapestry of Russia’s economic landscape.

Igor Altushkin, a prominent figure in Russia’s metallurgical landscape with an estimated wealth of $3.4 billion, has reportedly emerged as a principal financial supporter of the Urals Battalion, a volunteer group actively engaged alongside the Russian Armed Forces in the conflict in Ukraine. Multiple credible sources, including a Defense Ministry insider, have revealed that Altushkin not only provides crucial equipment but is credited as the primary backer, a fact substantiated by Viktor Yarkov, the head of the Special Forces Veterans Fund based in Yekaterinburg.

This revelation unfolds against the backdrop of Russia grappling with a significant manpower shortage during its military operations in Ukraine. With extensive frontlines and substantial losses, the Kremlin has had to deploy a mix of contract, mobilized, and volunteer soldiers, along with mercenaries. Altushkin’s role in financing the Urals Battalion extends beyond mere speculation, affirmed by Yarkov, who acknowledges Altushkin’s involvement alongside his copper company and other unnamed contributors.

The Russian Copper Company, chaired by Altushkin, has categorically denied any connection to the Urals Battalion or involvement in creating and financing military units participating in the Special Military Operation, as officially termed by Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. However, the specifics of Altushkin’s contributions, the extent of financial support, and the deployment details of the Urals Battalion remain unclear.


The complexities deepen as reports suggest Altushkin initially attempted to emulate the recruitment tactics of Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the notorious Wagner mercenary outfit. His efforts allegedly included recruiting convicts from Russian prisons, a strategy that faced obstacles when Prigozhin intervened to prevent potential rivals from tapping into the prison population.

Altushkin’s journey from a scrap metal trader to the founder of the Russian Copper Company in 2004 reflects his influence in Russia’s metallurgical domain. Despite the challenges imposed by Western sanctions linked to the Ukraine invasion, Altushkin has maintained his stature as Russia’s 48th-richest person, as per Forbes rankings. Last year witnessed a significant dent in his fortune, losing over $5 billion due to the strain on the metallurgical sector.

Noteworthy is Altushkin’s connection to the UK, where his wife and at least one son hold British citizenship. His real estate holdings in the UK include a £17 million ($21 million) London mansion, formerly owned by pop singer Madonna, and additional apartments valued at £2 million ($2.5 million). Despite the economic downturn, neither Altushkin nor his family has faced sanctions from the West.

Altushkin, often referred to as an ‘Orthodox billionaire,’ distinguishes himself through investments in building and restoring churches in Russia’s Sverdlovsk region and the predominantly Muslim republic of Chechnya in the North Caucasus. His close ties to the Kremlin are evident through several top state awards, assistance in funding the construction of a monument to Tsar Alexander III in Crimea, and the use of his private jet by the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill.

Philanthropy and Cultural Contributions:

Altushkin’s engagements are not confined to business; he actively supports the Russian Orthodox Church, earning the moniker “Orthodox billionaire.” His investments in building and restoring churches in Russia’s Sverdlovsk region and the majority-Muslim republic of Chechnya highlight his commitment to cultural preservation and religious endeavors.

The Russian Orthodox Church’s head, Patriarch Kirill, even utilized Altushkin’s private jet during a visit to Yekaterinburg in 2018. Altushkin’s ties with the Kremlin are evident through state awards and his role in funding the construction of a monument to Tsar Alexander III in annexed Crimea, unveiled by President Vladimir Putin in 2017.

The Impact of Sanctions on Igor Altushkin’s Metal Empire

In the realm of metals, Igor Altushkin, the billionaire oligarch at the helm of the Russian Copper Company, finds himself under the weight of sanctions. As the third-largest producer of copper in Russia, Altushkin’s business plays a pivotal role in a sector strategically significant for Putin’s military apparatus.

The sanction ripple extends beyond Altushkin, ensnaring eight other companies linked to metals production in Russia. The United Kingdom, in a synchronized move, has declared a ban on imports of Russian metals, encompassing aluminum, nickel, and copper.

This collective action intensifies the pressure on Russia’s metal industry, a crucial financial tributary fueling the Kremlin’s war machinery. The repercussions stretch far and wide, impacting not only the metal sector but also cascading into other industries such as transport and energy. The strategic move aims to curtail Russia’s financial resources, aiming to impede the sustenance of the Kremlin’s military endeavors.

Igor Altushkin’s Personal Life & Beyond:

Igor Altushkin, a family man, is happily married and takes pride in being a father to six children. His residence is nestled in the vibrant city of Yekaterinburg, Russia, reflecting his deep-rooted connection to his homeland. Notably, Altushkin holds a piece of London’s charm as the owner of one of Madonna’s former residences, showcasing his international influence.

Beyond his business endeavors, Altushkin’s passions extend to sports, particularly target shooting and boxing. In an effort to contribute to the world of boxing, he co-founded RCC Boxing Promotions, an initiative aimed at promoting the sport by organizing thrilling matches. Altushkin’s commitment to sports is not only a personal interest but also a testament to his dedication to fostering diverse athletic experiences.

Moreover, Altushkin is known for his unwavering support for the Russian Orthodox Church, demonstrating a commitment to both his faith and the cultural fabric of his nation. This multifaceted engagement in family life, international residences, sports promotion, and religious support adds layers to the persona of Igor Altushkin, showcasing a life rich in diverse experiences and meaningful connections.

Notably, Altushkin owns a £17 million ($21 million) London mansion, formerly owned by pop singer Madonna, along with several other apartments in the U.K.

Involvement in Military Affairs:            

In a surprising twist, Igor Altushkin found himself entangled with the Urals Battalion, a volunteer group actively participating alongside the Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine. Reports indicating Altushkin’s substantial financial backing to the battalion have sparked inquiries into his role in the conflict, prompting a closer examination of the complexities surrounding his military associations.

As questions arise about Altushkin’s involvement, the Russian Copper Company, an entity intricately linked with his name, vehemently denies any connection with military activities. The juxtaposition of Altushkin’s business endeavors and his alleged ties to the Urals Battalion adds a layer of intricacy to his public image, leaving observers to navigate the nuanced landscape of his engagements and the broader implications they might carry.

The financial support allegedly provided by Altushkin has given rise to speculation about the extent of his influence on the battalion’s operations, raising questions about the motivations behind such contributions. The blurred lines between business and military affairs underscore the challenges in deciphering Altushkin’s role in this unexpected dimension of geopolitical dynamics. As investigations unfold, the narrative surrounding Altushkin’s involvement in military affairs invites scrutiny and underscores the intricacies of navigating such uncharted territories.

 Recent Business Endeavors: A Strategic Shift in Altushkin’s Portfolio                  

In 2016, Igor Altushkin initiated a significant diversification of his business portfolio, marking his foray into the zinc industry with a noteworthy investment in the Chelyabinsk Zinc Factory, a pioneering player in Russian zinc processing. This strategic move underscores Altushkin’s proactive approach in expanding his business interests, capitalizing on opportunities within the metal processing sector.

Venturing Beyond Borders: Altushkin’s Global Reach in Copper-Rich Regions  

Simultaneously, Altushkin has embarked on several ventures in copper-rich nations, particularly focusing on Kazakhstan. These projects not only exemplify his keen business acumen but also signify a deliberate expansion strategy into regions abundant in copper resources. Altushkin’s calculated investments in diverse geographical landscapes underscore his vision for sustained growth and prominence in the global metal industry.

A Staircase to Wealth: Altushkin’s Financial Odyssey Unveiled

Tracing the trajectory of Igor Altushkin’s financial journey reveals a story of fluctuation and subsequent exponential growth in wealth during the second decade of the 21st century. In March 2010, his fortune stood at $1.1 billion, securing him the 62nd position among Russia’s wealthiest entrepreneurs in Forbes Magazine. Over the ensuing years, Altushkin’s wealth experienced oscillations, ranging from $1.2 billion to $1.7 billion until March 2017.

A Meteoric Rise: Altushkin’s Ascendance to Billionaire Status

However, a turning point occurred in March 2017 when Altushkin’s estimated wealth surged to a substantial $2 billion, marking a decisive milestone in his financial narrative. This meteoric rise continued, reaching $3.4 billion by March of the following year and escalating further to an impressive $4.3 billion in the subsequent year. This staggering ascent illustrates Altushkin’s adept navigation of economic landscapes, strategic investments, and an unwavering commitment to success in the competitive realm of business.

Altushkin’s financial trajectory not only mirrors his resilience and adaptability but also positions him as a notable figure in the global business arena. As his wealth continues to scale unprecedented heights, Altushkin’s strategic investments and diverse ventures solidify his standing as a key player in shaping the dynamics of the metal industry.

657 Day the Russia-Ukraine War Conflict Updates

Contributions to Social Development                                                                                  

Throughout his career, Igor Altushkin has taken an active role in advancing social development initiatives. He holds a position on the board of the Gorny National University of Mineral Resources and is a dedicated member of the Sverdlovsk Regional Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs. Altushkin extends financial support and assistance to orphaned children, those battling severe illnesses, and families facing destitution through the charitable foundation operated by his company.

Accolades and Awards:

In May 2017, Altushkin received the Order of Friendship from President Vladimir Putin, recognizing his contributions and achievements.

Conclusion: Igor Altushkin’s Legacy and Complexity      

Igor Altushkin’s life unfolds like a tapestry, woven with threads of entrepreneurship, philanthropy, geopolitical complexities, and personal passions. Born in the historic city of Yekaterinburg, his journey mirrors the dynamic landscapes of the Ural region, where industrial innovation meets cultural heritage.

Altushkin’s business acumen, prominently showcased through his role as the founder and largest shareholder of JSC “Russian Copper Company,” positions him as a key player in Russia’s economic narrative. The diversification of his portfolio into zinc, copper-rich ventures, and global strategic investments unveils a leader with foresight, navigating the intricate terrains of the metal industry.

The financial odyssey of Altushkin, marked by fluctuations and meteoric rises, reflects not only his adaptability but also his resilience in the face of economic challenges. From a billionaire status to global recognition in Forbes, his trajectory mirrors a strategic ascent, solidifying his status as a significant figure in the global business arena.

However, Altushkin’s narrative takes an unexpected turn with his alleged involvement in the Urals Battalion, raising questions about the intersection of business and military affairs. The denial by the Russian Copper Company adds layers of complexity to this aspect of his story, emphasizing the challenges in deciphering the motivations behind such contributions.

Altushkin’s multifaceted engagements extend beyond boardrooms and battlegrounds. His commitment to social development, exemplified by board memberships and charitable contributions, underscores a dedication to uplifting communities and individuals facing adversity. Accolades such as the Order of Friendship serve as testaments to his contributions recognized at the highest levels.

In the realm of sports, Altushkin’s promotion of boxing through RCC Boxing Promotions adds yet another layer to his diverse persona. His residence in Yekaterinburg and ownership of Madonna’s former London mansion showcase a fusion of local roots and global influence.

The Orthodox billionaire’s ties to the Russian Orthodox Church, evident through church restoration and support, highlight a commitment to cultural preservation and religious endeavors. His connections to the Kremlin, symbolized by state awards and monument funding, weave a narrative of influence extending beyond business.

As Altushkin’s wealth continues to scale unprecedented heights, his legacy becomes a chapter in Russia’s economic history. The complexities surrounding his involvement in military affairs beckon further scrutiny, emphasizing the nuanced nature of navigating uncharted territories.

In the grand tapestry of Igor Altushkin’s life, each thread contributes to a legacy that transcends borders and industries. The narrative is one of a businessman, philanthropist, sports enthusiast, and cultural custodian. As the story unfolds, the complexity of Altushkin’s legacy invites contemplation, offering a glimpse into a life intricately woven into the fabric of Russia’s past, present, and future.

Alexander Harris

Alexander Harris began his career as a journalist. He is one of the founders of the " Russian Oligarchs Tracker Unit ".

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