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Short bio of Petr Aven

Petr Aven (also Latinised as Pyotr Aven) is a Russian businessman, former politician and philanthropist. Between 2011 and 2022, he was Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Alfa-Bank banking group. With a personal fortune estimated at around USD 4.7 billion, Aven has been ranked as the 28th richest businessperson in Russia.

Petr Aven first went into business in 1993 after leaving a government post. In 1989, Aven was appointed as an advisor to the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Affairs. During this period, he was sent under contract to the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) in Laxenburg, Austria. In 1992, Aven was Russian Minister of Economic Relations under the administration of Boris Yeltsin and Yegor Gaidar. When Gaidar left his post, Aven followed suit at the end of 1992.

Aven has Latvian, Russian and Jewish heritage, and is currently based in Surrey, UK. Further to his political and business activities, he is a prominent supporter of the arts and an enthusiastic collector. He has stated in numerous interviews that collecting has been a hobby of his since childhood, beginning with stamps and toy cars.

After finding success in his career, Aven began collecting paintings and his personal collection includes masterpieces of 20th-century Russian painting by the likes of Marc Chagall and Wassily Kandinsky. He has recently begun the process of realising his long-held dream of opening a museum to house his collection. It was announced in 2022 that he had purchased a building in Riga, with plans to open the venue to the public by 2025.