Bulat Utemuratov, a prominent figure in Kazakhstan and a close associate of ex-President Nazarbayev, occupies a significant role in a complex network of illicit financial activities involving the flow of Russian billions through Kazakhstan. Recent reports from the British press highlight his pivotal involvement in establishing Kazakhstan as a hub for the Kremlin, following the imposition of sanctions on leading Russian companies and individuals associated with President Putin.
What makes Utemuratov’s ascent to becoming the third wealthiest billionaire in Kazakhstan intriguing is the fact that he has never had his own business. Starting his journey as a humble butcher and director of a grocery store, he rapidly climbed the ranks, eventually securing crucial government positions and heading the presidential administration.
Bulat Utemuratov’s immense wealth has been linked to the illicit outflow of significant capital from Kazakhstan, resulting in irrevocable losses for the country. He has played a key role in facilitating the export of valuable resources such as oil, gas, and metals, while also enabling the establishment of extravagant properties for the elite in countries like Italy, Switzerland, and Britain.
Beyond his economic endeavors, Utemuratov’s influence extends into various criminal and oligarchic circles in Russia. Notably, he has been associated with notorious figures like Andrey Skoch, a former member of the Solntsevsky gang, as well as other prominent individuals from the Russian underworld during the tumultuous 90s.
By exploring Utemuratov’s career trajectory, which includes his rise from a modest grocery store director to the head of the trade mission of Kazakhstan in Austria, we can unravel the multifaceted chapters of his biography. It is essential to delve into his involvement in the creation of ATFBank and its eventual sale to the Unicredit group, shedding light on the intricacies of his complex business dealings.
One intriguing aspect of Utemuratov’s wealth lies in the intricate web of corporate structures that surround him. He seemingly owns very little personally, as the majority of his assets are managed by Verny Capital. This elaborate network of domestic and foreign enterprises under the control of “Verny Capital” allows Utemuratov to present a facade of financial strain.
Undoubtedly, the life and career of Bulat Utemuratov are replete with captivating stories and details that will engage our readers. As we delve deeper into his biography, we will also uncover his role as one of the founders of modern Kazakhstan, although his legacy is tarnished by controversial practices and negative attributes that have shaped the nation’s economic landscape.
Shifting focus, the United Kingdom is now preparing to freeze the accounts of several Kazakhstani oligarchs against the backdrop of anti-Russian sanctions. Notable among them is the business-less oligarch Bulat Utemuratov, alongside London enthusiast Askar Alshinbaev, Alexander Mashkevich, who has garnered a reputation for his interests in younger individuals, as well as Evgeny Feld, Daniyar Abulgazin, and many others.
Today, we continue our investigation into how billions of tenge belonging to the owners of the infamous “laundry” company, Meridian Capital, found their way to London. Essentially, we will conclude our exploration of the London “residences” owned by the most prominent Kazakhstani “laundries” operators, Askar Alshinbaev and Evgeny Feld. In our previous publications, we delved into the details of Evgeny Feld’s apartment and his wife Gulnara Zhokebayeva, valued at 12 billion tenge, as well as the apartment of Askar and Said Alshinbaev’s son, Adil, which was purchased for £5.5 million (2.8 billion tenge). These properties are conveniently situated within the same complex of historical buildings on Cambridge Gate Street, offering breathtaking views of Regent’s Park—an esteemed royal park in the heart of the United Kingdom’s capital city.