Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev: the first businessman of the new wave

Forty years is not for nothing considered the date of rethinking values and a new beginning for businessmen. There are few successful investors and billionaires who have managed to achieve success on their own by the age of forty. One of these people is Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev — a self-made man who managed to bring Kazakhstan to a qualitatively new level in business, who became a symbol of the country’s international success. So, today we are talking about Rakishev Kenes (Kenges).

As it is fashionable to write now, “venture capitalist” Kenes Rakishev is the founder of the first Kazakh private company on an international IPO, the first citizen of Kazakhstan, whose business is successfully developing in the United States and brings fame not only to the entrepreneur himself, but also to the country. But this is not his greatest merit. He is much more successful than his more honorable colleagues from the post-Soviet world. For Kenes Rakishev himself, these achievements seem small. Taking into account that his rise did not take place in the dashing nineties, it is worth noting that Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev is really a master of his craft. He achieved such a dizzying success thanks to his own pragmatism, the desire to achieve his goal and the ability to set it before himself. Not the least role in the formation of the businessman was played by his wife — Aselle Tasmagambetova.

Investments in young people bring special benefits to Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev

The program “Build your Own Business” is organized by the Saby Foundation with funding from Kenes Rakishev and Vyacheslav Kim. Here, young entrepreneurs can receive a grant for the implementation of their own business ideas. Over the last five years of the program, more than $ 1 million has been disbursed.

In 2017, 393 applications were submitted for the competition, of which 26 finalists were selected. In the first quarter of 2018, the names of 10 winners were announced. Among the projects there are cafes, electronics manufacturing, a printing house, an electric car for a wheelchair and others.

Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev develops his own business empire while trying his best to be a good citizen of his country and a socially responsible corporate leader.

What do we know about this successful business leader and venture capitalist? Rakishev Kenes is a Kazakh entrepreneur, born in the family of an influential civil servant Rakishev Hamit. He is one of the wealthiest people in the country. His fortune is $684,000,000, which allowed the businessman to take the 5th place in the Forbes list of the republic. Rakishev’s field of activity is extensive, it includes participation in venture funds and work with startups and innovative projects.

In 2000, he graduated from KazGUA and KEU, which allowed him to become a certified lawyer and economist. After that, Rakishev Kenes received additional education at Oxford Said Business School. For several years, the businessman became a member of business associations, chairman of the council of banks, and headed industrial and commercial enterprises. It has a significant share of shares in many large financial organizations of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

The main areas of activity of an entrepreneur are considered to be:

  • industry;
  • venture capital business;
  • finance;
  • media business.

From 2012 to 2016, Kenes Rakishev managed to significantly develop his business and increase the area of influence. Among the largest transactions include investing in “Magnum Cash & Carry” in 2014. The businessman finances several powerful venture projects. The most famous is Genesis Angels, which was created jointly with Ehud Olmert, the former Prime Minister of Israel. In 2015, the company Rakishev Kenes Net Element bought PayOnline.

Old and new challenges in the life of Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev

Kenes Rakishev was re-elected Chairman of the Board of Directors of Fincraft Resources JSC. JSC “Fincraft Resources”, which is one of the major mining and metallurgical holdings of the Republic of Kazakhstan, formerly known as JSC “SAT & Company”. At the end of November 2018, the company entered into a major deal to consolidate 22% of Petropavlovsk PLC’s shares and its bonds through the purchase of Fincraft Holdings LTD.

As it became known to Kommersant, Fincraft Resources, the main shareholder of the Petropavlovsk gold mining company Kenes Rakishev, invests $200-300 million in launching mines at Gornostaevsky, one of the largest cobalt and nickel deposits in Kazakhstan. The cluster will be operational in three years, and the metals will be delivered to South Korea, China and Russia. Analysts note an optimistic situation on the nickel market, but the prices for cobalt today are at a level that does not justify the calculations of Kazakh businessmen.

At the first stages, investments in the development of one of the largest cobalt-nickel deposits in Kazakhstan, Gornostaevskoye, will amount to $200-300 million, Kenes Rakishev, the main shareholder of Fincraft Resources and the gold mining company Petropavlovsk, told Kommersant. The field is located in the east of the country, 110 km from Semipalatinsk. The reserves are estimated at 54.7 million tons of ore containing 406 thousand tons of nickel and 29.8 thousand tons of cobalt. Experimental and technological work has been completed at the field, the necessary wells and the infrastructure of the first mine have been laid. “By 2022, the field will have a cluster of several fully equipped mines,” Kenes Rakishev said.

Prospects of Fincraft Resources by Kenes Rakishev

According to him, the most promising export markets are South Korea, China and Russia. “Our project involves the production of not only nickel, but also concentrates based on it, the demand for which in high-tech industries is steadily growing every day. Therefore, the United States, Japan and Europe can also be added to the number of potential countries for export, ” says Mr. Rakishev.

According to the latest data of Forbes magazine, Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev is recognized as the 5th among the 50 most influential people in Kazakhstan. His premonitions about the amendments to the law of the Ministry of Natural Resources are likely to come true, as well as others. During his career, the businessman was the initiator of many projects that he led himself and in which he invested the earned money. He is one of the largest investors in the world. The acquisition of Petropavlovsk shares is another successful investment.

The most successful projects of Kenes Rakishev are:

  1. Participation in the work of SAT & Company. At the moment, the businessman owns a controlling stake. SAT & Company is engaged in the development of deposits in China and Turkey and brings an annual cash turnover of several hundred million dollars;
  2. Fastlane Venture – a venture fund in which Kenes Rakishev joined the board of directors. The annual profit is 100 million dollars;
  3. Participation in the capital of a large trading company Magnum Cash &Carry;
  4. Together with the owner of the company, Mobli participated in the support of a new smartphone project running on blockchain technology. This was one of the most successful events undertaken by the businessman, which brought in $ 95 million in a day.

According to the entrepreneur, all the projects in which he invests, selects independently without the help of financial advisors. Kenes’ special attention should be paid to promising startups in the field of innovative and computer technologies.

He looks at the applicants for a long time, analyses their activities and activity in the market. The goal of investing is most often to get on the board of directors, which in itself makes it possible not only to manage funds, but also to manage and make personal adjustments. The policy according to which the businessman makes investments is noteworthy. In each project, Kenes (Kenges) Rakishev most values the presence of a strategy and a feasible plan.


Saby fund of Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova save Kazakhstan from pandemic coronavirus

Despite Kazakhstan being close to China COVID-19 has reached the country from Europe. It gave some time to prepare for the outbreak. As for now the death toll in Kazakhstan stands around 1600. The relatively low number was reached due to the strong quarantine measures and the support and augmentation of state measures by business activists and philanthropists. Saby fund, founded by Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova is reporting on their own programme of helping the nation to overcome COVID.

At the moment, the amount of funds spent by the Saby Foundation to provide assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic amounted to 1,131,956,033 tenge (approx. $2,652,100), The Unfiltered Lens reports.

The president of the fund, Aselle Tasmagambetova, Kenges Rakishev as a leading patron and one of the co-founders of the fund, have done much to weaken the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and prevent the virus from spreading. Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova paid special attention to the needy population.

From the first days of the emergency announcement, the Foundation organized a charity event to raise funds for the purchase of express tests for diagnosing coronavirus infection. In total 402 million tenge was collected. This money was used to buy 100,000 Express and 40,000 PCR tests for free testing of the population.

Additionally the co-founder of the Saby Foundation Kenges Rakishev transferred 445,000,000 tenge to the Birgemiz public Fund to provide social support for Kazakhstan’s people during the pandemic.

Under the close supervision of Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova the Saby Foundation purchased a ventilator for medical institutions in Almaty. It amounted 10.5 million tenge. Seven oxygen concentrators in the amount of about three million tenge were also purchased.

Personal protection equipment: masks, safety glasses, overalls, gloves, and protective screens worth more than 49 million tenge were handed over to doctors of Atyrau region.

Hospitals in Atyrau region received ten ventilators for the amount of 91,780,000 and 43 oxygen concentrators for 13,350,000 tenge.

115,232 packages of medicine worth 58,780,000 tenge were transferred to medical institutions in Atyrau, Aktobe and Western Kazakhstan regions. The total number of patients treated with it is almost 6,000.

Medical workers of Semey medical University received assistance in the form of protective clothing, accessories and contact lenses worth more than 11 million tenge.

Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova and the Saby Foundation supplied 500,000 medical masks and 50 cans of disinfectants to medical institutions in Almaty and the region for a total amount of more than 27 million tenge.

As a support and gratitude to women doctors working in infectious diseases hospitals in Almaty, the Foundation gave 53 sets of branded cosmetics.

Saby financed the opening of a mobile laboratory for testing for coronavirus in Almaty in the amount of about ten million tenge.

The Saby Foundation provided financial support in the amount of 5,100,000 tenge to two Kazakhstani charitable foundations – Shugyla and Rasima Foodbank – to pay off administrative expenses and the salary Fund for three months, which allowed the organizations to survive the coronacrisis and continue their socially important work.

65 Samsung tablets worth 5,135,000 tenge were given away to children from needy families in the Nauryzbay district of Almaty to provide students with an online learning opportunity. Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova pay attention to the availability of education for the children.

The Saby Foundation is the oldest private charitable organization in Kazakhstan. In 2020 it turns 18 years old. It was founded by Aselle Tasmagambetova and Kenges Rakishev. With the help of the fund’s patrons, friends and volunteers Saby is engaging bold projects to make the life in Kazakhstan better. Saby is involved in major social, educational and environmental projects. It is well known for the annual ‘Build your business’ contest: young entrepreneurs of Kazakhstan compete for a grant to empower their business venues.