Leonard Blavatnik is an American-British Jewish investor born in Ukraine. He is the 31th richest man in the world1 and the richest man in the UK.2 He owns an investing company called Access Industries.
His wide scale of contacts, affiliations and bi-partisan political donations illustrate an omnipresent yet shadowy character with minimal media attention.
Blavatnik funds scholarships for IDF veterans.3
Affiliation with Netanyahu
Leonard Blavatnik is Benjamin Netanyahu’s close friend. Netanyahu was eager for Blavatnik to acquire the Israeli Channel 13 in order to turn it into what has been described as an Israeli version of “Fox News”. Blavatnik ultimately rejected the idea after initial attempts failed.4
Bipartisan Influence in US Politics
Blavatnik’s political donations span across the left-right divide in the US, donating to major figureheads within the Republican and Democratic parties. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer and Kamala Harris are among Democratic politicians who have received funding from Blavatnik. Donald Trump, Mitt Romney, Lindsey Graham, Marco Rubio and John McCain form part of Blavatnik’s Republican donation list.
Interestingly, Blavatnik was accused of donating to Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign “on behalf of Russia”, according to the Mueller investigations.5