Alexander Borisovich Zhukov (Russian: Александр Борисович Жуков; born 13 June 1954) is a Russian businessman. He is the founder and major owner of the international investment group Interfinance, investing in port and transport infrastructure, food industry and real estate, as well as engaged in portfolio investments. The assets of Interfinance group currently include transshipment port terminals (sulfur, mineral fertilizers and other bulk cargo, vehicles) in Russia and Ukraine, Iceberry group of companies - the Russian ice-cream producer and distributor, development projects in Russia and Ukraine, road construction business and insurance business in Ukraine.
Zhukov was born in 1954 in Moscow. His father, Shayaborg (Boris) Rabkin, was a playwright and writer, and his mother, Inessa Rabkina, was an editor at the Moscow film studio. After graduating from school, he worked as an assistant to a film director at the Moscow film studio “Tsentrnauchfilm”. In 1981, he graduated from the Institute of Asian and African Studies under the Moscow State University. After graduation, he worked as editor at “Sovinterfest” (a division of the Goskino organizing exhibitions and festivals).
In the late 1980s, he started his business activity. Zhukov has resided in London since 1993. In 2001, he became a British citizen.
In 2001, Zhukov was arrested in Italy and spent several months under arrest on suspicion of being engaged in arms smuggling from Ukraine to the states of former Yugoslavia. Subject to legal documents, Zhukov was charged of “moral complicity”. In 2004, Zhukov was absolved from the offences of “moral complicity” in arms trading, because (as was stated in court decision) the offences, for which he was charged, did not occur.
Zhukov was previously married to molecular biologist Yelena Zhukova. He has one daughter, Darya "Dasha" Zhukova, and two sons: Mikhail Zhukov and Boris Zhukov. Through his daughter Dasha, who was married to oil oligarch Roman Abramovich, he has a grandson, Aaron Abramovich (born 2009), and a granddaughter, Leah Abramovich (born 2013).
In the late 1980s Zhukov founded the cooperative “Byte” and started the business of selling personal computers.
In the early nineties jointly with his acquaintances Leonid Lebedev and Mark Garber he founded a cooperative named “Sintez”. In 1991-1992 Sintez started to trade oil and oil products.
In 1992 Sintez founded a company named “Negusneft” that acquired a license to explore and develop a small Varyngskoe field in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District. Also, Sintez acquired 10% share in “Nizhnevartovskneftegaz” (the core of the future company TNK), 15% in “Rosneft-Sakhalinmorneftegaz” and 15% in the Yaroslavl Oil Processing Plant. In 1997 the group’s turnover reached USD 1.5 bn.
In 1993 the group began to cooperate with the Odessa Oil Processing Plant. At the same time the group were making investments to the port development. The investments amounted to USD 100 mln. By the end of the nineties the capacity of the oil intake, storage and transshipment facility reached 25 mln tons per year.
Sintez transshipped oil through the Odessa port terminal and arranged for oil trading in the international market through its traders located in the UK, Switzerland and Finland.
In 1995 the group acquired a Ukrainian bank which later became Marine Transport Bank. Initially its operations were limited to the processing of the group’s transactions but later it expanded its operations and started to service public agencies and enterprises in the Odessa Region.
In the late nineties the Sintez business partners decided to divide the business. The transshipment business and the bank in Ukraine passed to Zhukov, while the Russian assets - to Lebedev.
In 1998 Zhukov started to cooperate with Lukoil. A joint venture “Luk-Sintez Oil” was established to supply the Lukoil-produced oil. In 1999 the company acquired the Odessa Oil Processing Plant. In 2000 Zhukov sold his share in the company to Lukoil.
In the beginning of 2000 Zhukov consolidated his transshipment business in Ukraine under the Transit brand. Later in 2001-2002 the business was sold.
In 2004 Marine Transport Bank was sold.
After the sale of the transshipment business and bank Mr Zhukov focused on investing in Russia. The Interfinance group was founded with “Interfinance SA”, Switzerland as the headquarter company. The group invested in various sectors such as port infrastructure, oil and oil extraction, food industry, portfolio loans, construction, including road construction, development, land assets, portfolio investments.
Key projects of the Interfinance group
In 2003-2007 Zhukov jointly with Ziyavudin Magomedov and Boris Davletyarov conducted successfully portfolio investments in the Gazprom, Sberbank and Transneft shares.
In 2005 the group acquired the Ice-Fili ice-cream production and sale business later reorganized into Iceberry group of companies. Interfinance continues to own and develop this business.
In 2004 Mr Zhukov acquired a considerable lot of shares in a UK oil and gas company - JKX Oil & Gas plc. through his corporate vehicle “Glengary Overseas Ltd”. In 2007 he sold a part of his stake to the structures owned by Ihor Kolomoyskyi. At the time the entities of Zhukov and Kolomoisky were the two major shareholders in JKX. In 2009-2010 the shares in JKX lost 1/3 in value and in the next two years the loss in value reached 80%. In 2013 the major shareholders attempted to change the management of the company, however the directors then in office attempted not to allow the same stating that the two shareholders were acting in concert. In spite of being informed by the shareholders to the contrary JKX nevertheless decided to restrict the shareholders’ voting rights claiming the information provided being incorrect. The shareholders initiated court proceedings to protect their rights. The proceedings went through all of the three instances in the UK. At the end of 2015 the Supreme Court of the UK finally resolved the matter by holding that JKX by restricting the shareholders’ rights had acted with improper purpose, namely, with a view to influence on the outcome of the voting at the general meeting (and not with a view to encourage the shareholders to provide information). However, the issue of whether the shareholders were acting in concert and the nature of arrangements between them was not the subject of the dispute and was neither reviewed nor assessed by the court.
In 2007 the Interfinance group sold its Russian gas asset – the Koshekhablskoe field in Adygeya to JKX.
Early in 2016 Glengary sold its shares in JKX and Zhukov ceased to be a shareholder therein.
In 2005 Zhukov started transport logistics business in Russia. He acquired a site and built a bulk cargo (sulfur) transshipment terminal at the port of Ust-Luga, Russia. Currently the construction of the second stage - a mineral fertilizer transshipment terminal - is being finalized.