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Russian Billionaire Ramon Abramovich Barred From UK Over Link To Putin Government

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Roman Abramovich

For reportedly having links with the Russian government, Russian billionaire and owner of Chelsea football club, Roman Abramovich has been banned from living in Britain.

This is coming, following the latest crisis between the Ukrainian and Russian governments.

Investors King had earlier reported that Russian troops launched a wide-range war on Ukraine on Thursday. This development has prompted the Ukrainian government to declare a state of emergency and Martial law on the entire territory of Ukraine except for the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which is expected to take effect from midnight of February 23, 2022, for a period of 30 days.

In a report by The Sun UK, senior security sources revealed that Abramovich, who owns a £125million mansion near Kensington is unlikely to ever be allowed to live in Britain again, as immigration officials have been instructed on this.

He was alleged to have business connections to Russian President Vladimir Putin, even though he denied the allegation.

In a security memo on the floor of the House of Commons on Thursday, UK’s Labour MP, Chris Bryant revealed that the Russian billionaire is linked to “corrupt activity and practices”, adding that his ownership of Chelsea should be questioned.

He said: “As part of HMGs Russia strategy, aimed at targeting illicit finance and malign activity, Abramovich remains of interest to HMG due to his links to the Russian state and his public association with corrupt activity and practices.

“An example of this is Abramovich admitting in court proceedings that he paid for political influence.

“Therefore HMG is focused on ensuring individuals linked to illicit finance and malign activity are unable to base themselves in the UK and will use the relevant tools at its disposal – including immigration powers – to prevent this.”

In a report by NationalWorld, Abramovich’s relationship with Putin was established prior to the latter’s ascension to the role of President. Abramovich reportedly had “privileged access” to the leader, as well as “very good relations”.

The report further noted that this is not the first time that Abramovich’s association with Putin and his role at Stamford Bridge has caused controversies. According to earlier reports, claims that Abramovich bought Chelsea on the orders of Putin led to the former receiving an apology from publisher Harper Collins after they were initially outlined in a book entitled “Putin’s People”.

According to Forbes, Abramovich owns stakes in steel giant Evraz, Norilsk Nickel and the U.K.’s Chelsea soccer team. He also owns the world’s second-largest yacht, 533-foot Eclipse, bought for nearly $400 million in 2010.

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Billionaire Femi Otedola Bolsters Stake in FBN Holdings, Becomes Largest Shareholder

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Femi Otedola

Billionaire businessman Femi Otedola has solidified his position as the largest shareholder of FBN Holdings after acquiring a substantial number of shares through both direct and indirect investments.

The transaction, which took place on June 20, 2024, saw Mr. Otedola’s personal investment vehicle, Calvados Global Services Limited, and himself collectively purchase a total of 863,180,810 ordinary shares of FBN Holdings.

This acquisition amounted to 546,674,034 shares purchased by Calvados Global Services Limited at a price of N21.97 per share, and 316,506,776 shares bought directly by Mr. Otedola at N21.91 per share.

The combined investment value of these acquisitions totals N18,950,313,232.34, a significant financial commitment by Mr. Otedola to bolster his influence within one of Nigeria’s foremost financial institutions.

In February 2024, Femi Otedola owned 1,989,342,376 indirect units, constituting 5.54% of FBN Holdings’ total shareholding, alongside 40,033,982 direct shares, amounting to 0.11%.

Combined, his holdings stood at 2,029,376,358 shares, equivalent to about 5.65% of the company’s shares.

At that time, Oba Otudeko’s Barbican Capital Limited held the largest stake in the bank.

However, following his acquisition of an additional 863,180,810 shares valued at N18,950,313,232.34 on June 20, 2024, Otedola has now emerged as FBN Holdings’ largest shareholder.

Otedola has now emerged as FBN Holdings’ largest shareholder.

The billionaire’s decision to augment his stake in FBN Holdings aligns with his broader investment strategy in Nigeria’s financial sector.

It also reflects his confidence in the long-term growth and stability of the banking industry amidst evolving economic conditions.

Industry analysts have noted that Mr. Otedola’s move not only strengthens his position within FBN Holdings but also signals a vote of confidence in the leadership and strategic direction of the bank under current market conditions.

As the largest shareholder, Mr. Otedola’s increased influence is expected to have implications for the governance and operational decisions of FBN Holdings, potentially shaping its future trajectory in Nigeria’s banking landscape.

The acquisition comes at a time when the Nigerian economy is navigating various challenges, including inflationary pressures and regulatory changes.

Mr. Otedola’s expanded stake in FBN Holdings positions him uniquely to influence and contribute to the resilience and growth of the institution amid these dynamics.

With this latest development, all eyes are on how Mr. Otedola’s enhanced role will impact FBN Holdings’ strategic initiatives, shareholder relations, and overall performance in the coming quarters.

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Elon Musk Reclaims World’s Richest Title with $6 Billion AI Startup Boost

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Elon Musk X

Elon Musk has once again ascended to the top of the global wealth rankings, surpassing Bernard Arnault, after his new artificial intelligence startup, xAI, secured $6 billion in funding.

This latest financial windfall has catapulted Musk’s net worth to an astonishing $209.2 billion, outstripping Arnault’s $199.3 billion and placing Jeff Bezos in second place with an estimated $199.9 billion as of May 30, 2024.

The announcement, made during the Memorial Day weekend, highlighted the significant investment in xAI, which now boasts a pre-money valuation of $18 billion.

Musk’s 60% stake in the startup is estimated to be worth $14.4 billion, further solidifying his financial dominance.

This valuation surge is particularly noteworthy considering the involvement of investors from Musk’s $44 billion acquisition of Twitter, now rebranded.

Musk’s wealth is predominantly derived from his substantial holdings in Tesla and SpaceX. His nearly 12% stake in Tesla and 42% stake in SpaceX are each valued at approximately $75 billion.

Despite Tesla’s fluctuating stock prices and the rising valuation of SpaceX, Musk’s financial prowess remains robust.

Also, Forbes estimates that the value of Musk’s 74% stake in his social media company has decreased to around $7 billion, nearly 70% less than its purchase price in 2022.

In a significant legal development, a Delaware judge invalidated nearly $50 billion in performance-based Tesla stock options granted to Musk in 2018, citing unfair award processes.

Tesla shareholders are set to vote on reapproving these options on June 13, which could further impact Musk’s financial status.

Meanwhile, SpaceX is reportedly aiming for a valuation of $200 billion, up from $180 billion last December, indicating a continued upward trajectory for Musk’s ventures.

The Forbes Real Time Billionaire Index, as of May 30, reflects the shifting fortunes of the world’s wealthiest individuals.

Musk now leads with $209.2 billion, followed by Bezos at $199.9 billion, and Arnault at $199.3 billion.

Other notable figures in the top ten include Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Ellison, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and Steve Ballmer.

Musk’s remarkable financial rebound underscores the volatile nature of the global wealth rankings and the significant impact of strategic investments in emerging technologies.

As xAI continues to develop, it will be intriguing to observe how Musk leverages this new venture to maintain his position as the world’s richest person.

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Vietnam Court Sentences Real Estate Tycoon to Death Over $12.46 Billion Fraud Case

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Truong My Lan

A court in Vietnam has sentenced real estate tycoon Truong My Lan to death for her involvement in a $12.46 billion financial fraud case.

The verdict delivered on Thursday comes after a trial that began on March 5 and ended earlier than anticipated, drawing attention both domestically and internationally.

Truong My Lan, the chairwoman of real estate developer Van Thinh Phat Holdings Group, was found guilty of embezzlement, bribery, and violations of banking regulations in the bustling business hub of Ho Chi Minh City.

Despite pleading not guilty to the charges of embezzlement and bribery, the court handed down a death sentence for the embezzlement charge and 20 years each for the other two offenses.

The trial and subsequent verdict are part of a broader crackdown on corruption spearheaded by Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party, led by Nguyen Phu Trong, who has long vowed to eradicate corruption from the country’s political and economic landscape.

The case revolves around allegations of massive embezzlement and financial mismanagement within Saigon Joint Stock Commercial Bank (SCB), which Truong My Lan effectively controlled through a network of proxies.

Prosecutors accused her of siphoning off over 304 trillion dong from the bank through illicit loans to shell companies and other unlawful practices.

Truong My Lan’s rise from a cosmetics trader to a prominent figure in Vietnam’s financial world adds a layer of intrigue to the case. Starting her career in the central market of Ho Chi Minh City, she founded Van Thinh Phat in 1992 and quickly ascended to prominence in the real estate sector.

However, her fall from grace has been swift and dramatic, culminating in the unprecedented death sentence.

The trial also implicated several others, including Lan’s husband, Eric Chu, and her niece, who received lengthy prison terms for their roles in the fraud scheme.

The court’s decision reflects the severity with which Vietnam is addressing corruption within its borders, with the government keen to demonstrate its commitment to accountability and transparency.

Despite the verdict, some remain skeptical about the effectiveness of Vietnam’s anti-corruption efforts, pointing to widespread bribery and graft across various sectors.

However, the sentencing of Truong My Lan sends a strong message that no one, regardless of their status or influence, is above the law in Vietnam’s pursuit of justice and integrity.

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