Alisher Usmanov is the founder of USM Holdings, a diversified international group, which brings together companies, including Metalloinvest, MegaFon, Mail.Ru Group and UTH Russia. Separately, Mr. Usmanov also owns Kommersant Publishing House, the leading media group in Russia, and holds a stake in Arsenal Football Club.
Mr. Usmanov is an active member of the governing bodies of a number of NGOs and companies that play key roles in the development of the Russian economy. Since 2006, he has been on the Board of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs. Mr. Usmanov served as the General Director of Gazprom Investholding from February 2000 to October 2014; prior to that, he held the role of Adviser to the Chairman of Gazprom and First Deputy General Director of Gazprom Investholding. From 1994 to 1998, Mr. Usmanov headed Interfin Interbank Investment and Finance Company. From 1995 to 1997, he served as the First Deputy Chairman of MAPO-Bank, and from 1994 to 1995, he was an Adviser to the General Director of Moscow Aviation Industrial Enterprise. From 1990 to 1994, Mr. Usmanov worked as the Deputy General Director of Intercross JSC.
Attaching great significance to philanthropic work, Mr. Usmanov was ranked the most charitable giver in Russia in 2014 by Bloomberg. The founder of USM Holdings is a trustee for a range of social, educational and cultural organisations. These include the Russian Geographical Society, Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), National Research University, Higher School of Economics and European University in St. Petersburg.
Mr. Usmanov devotes considerable attention to the development of sports in Russia and globally. He has been the President of the International Fencing Federation since 2008 and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Russian Olympian Sportsmen Support Fund. He was a member of the Councils of the 2014 Sochi XXII Olympic Winter Games and XI Paralympic Winter Games.
Mr. Usmanov was awarded the Order for Service to the Fatherland IV class in recognition of his services to the state, as well as his community and charitable activities. He was also awarded the Order of Alexander Nevsky and the Order of Honour of the Russian Federation for his professional achievements; the Medal for Contribution to International Cooperation by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation; and the Order of Friendship of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Mr. Usmanov graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, with a degree in international law in 1976 and he received a degree in banking from the Finance Academy under the Government of the Russian Federation in 1997. He is fluent in English, French, Russian and Uzbek.