Eugene Tenenbaum, a close associate, advisor, and business partner to Roman Abramovich for many decades, has been added to the UK Government’s list of sanctions today, alongside another Abramovich associate, David Davidovich. Both businessmen have had their assets frozen, which are said to be worth up to £10b.
This follows just a day after the government of Jersey froze a claimed $7b worth of Abramovich assets, many of which also involved Tenenbaum in a directorial capacity. (Which does make one wonder: if Jersey alone can freeze $7b worth of assets, Abramovich’s overall wealth may have been rather underestimated.)
This is all meant to try to keep putting the financial hurt of Vladimir Putin’s “war machine”, which sounds reasonable in theory but seems to be not working at all in the real world — unsurprisingly. Still, here we are, with another Chelsea name in the news, which could raise further concern of further collateral damage at the club that’s already being used to win PR clout for the government. Marina Granovskaia, for example, is another close associate, even if not quite moving in the same financial strata (that we know of). Unlike Tenenbaum, she’s essential to the running of the club, which all four groups looking to buy the club have recognized as well.
Tenenbaum has been a Chelsea Board member and director since the Abramovich takeover in 2003. Ironically, he was born in what is now Ukraine (Soviet Union at the time), before emigrating at a young age with his family to Canada, where he holds citizenship. I suppose nationalities and ancestries don’t mean much in terms of the financials that are being targeted here, though they seem noteworthy just the same.
Chelsea have yet to comment whether Tenenbaum remains in his position.