Sergei Viktorovich Popov (Сергей Попов) is the majority owner of MDM Bank. Popov has amassed a fortune by cofounding MDM Industrial Group in 2006; TMK, the largest pipe producer in the world; Eurochem, Russia’s largest fertilizer manufacturer; and SUEK, Russia’s largest coal miner.
In October 2014, Forbes estimated that Sergei Popov had a net worth of $5.1 billion making him the 283rd richest person in the world and the 25th richest person in Russia.
Sergei Popov was born in 1971, in Yekaterinburg, Russia. In 1993, he graduated from the Ural Polytechnical Institute with a degree in Industrial Heat Power Engineering. Shortly thereafter, Popov worked his way to become a partner in Ural Siberian Commercial and Industrial Company (USTPK), a pipe and a raw material supplier for metal processors. He also partnered in Prodcontract Company. He profited greatly from his interests in industrial and metal products.
In 1996, Sergei Popov and Andrei Melnichenko founded MDM Business Concern. They continued to expand their joint empire together by creating MDM Industrial group in 2000. By 2014, Melnichenko had an estimated net worth of $8.9 billion.
MDM invited Popov to serve on the Board of Directors in 2002. Sergei Popov owned about 58.3% of MDM Bank in 2014. Among Russian banks, MDM is rated with the 23rd highest investment in corporate loans, 19th in total assets and 13th in retail deposits in Russia. MDM Bank has assets valued at $9 billion. It services over 3 million people.
In 2012, MDM Bank merged with Igor Kim’s Siberian Ursa Bank.
Around 2000, Sergei Popov, Andrey Melnichenko and Dimitry Pumpyansky created TMK Russia’s largest pipe producer and exporter. By 2006, Popov and Melnichenko had sold their shares to Pumpyansky.
Dynamic Duo Splits
Continuing with expanding and diversifying their businesses, Popov and Melnichenko went on to found Eurochem and SUEK. However, since 2006, they have been in the process of separating their merged assets. In 2012, Popov sold his 17% share of SUEK to Melnichenko. That sale completed the split between their assets.
Around 1998, Popov and Anton Malevsky bought a 10% stake in Siberian Aluminum (SibAl) from Oleg Deripaska and Mikhail Cheney. Later SibAl merged with aluminum giant, Sibneft, which was owned by Roman Abramovitch, Boris Berezovsky and Badri Patarkatsishvili to create Russian Aluminum (RUSAL).
Modern Art Collection
Sergei Popov has a collection of Russian Modern Impressionist Art that is displayed in the Novy Museum, in Moscow. He also has a gallery in Berlin that promotes Russian art in Europe.
Launch of a Growth Oriented Business University
Sergei Popov was among a group of Russian billionaires, politicians, activists and scholars who founded the Moscow School of Management (Skolkovo). Skolkovo is a business school that provides students with practical skills to boost a business’ growth and profits. Popov serves on the Coordination Council of Skolkolo together with Russian billionaires Ruben Vardanian, Alexander Abramov among others. The University is part of Moscow’s New City – an area which President Dimitri Medvedev proposed to develop as a high-tech city near lands that were owned by Suleyman Kerimov and Roman Abramovitch.