BBC chairman invested in a crypto firm founded by a Russian oligarch

Richard Sharp, a former banker who is now serving as the Chairman of BBC since February 2021, has apparently been using an off-shore company to fund a cryptocurrency-related business founded by a Russian oligarch.

bbc-chairman-crypto
Richard Sharp

Interestingly enough, the oligarch is now sanctioned because of the continuing war between Russia and Ukraine.

According to reportsSharp utilized a company registered in the Cayman Islands to invest in a cryptocurrency-related business called Atomyze. Atomyze is based in Switzerland by Vladimir Potanin, a well-known Russian Oligarch.

Further, Potanin is referred to as the Nickel King and is known to have ties to President Vladimir Putin also. It is interesting to note that he was also one of the oligarchs invited to the Kremlin at the time Russia invaded Ukraine.

Also read, G7 summit bans import of Russian Gold

However, the BBC Chairman reportedly invested the fund back in 2019 using a company called ABCP GP Ltd., enlisted in the Cayman Islands. Atomyze is a platform that leverages blockchain-based technology to permit users to trade commodities. To be more specific, metals are produced by Potanin’s company. At the time, Sharp was not serving as the Chairman of the BBC.

A spokesperson for Sharp’s investment trust remarked on the matter, saying that he had a longstanding interest in a range of emerging technology while also expressing that, at the time, there were no sanctions inflicted on Potanin.

Furthermore, Sharp had put his investments in a blind trust which illustrates an agreement that the funds are handled by a third party to fully avoid any possible conflicts of interest.

The arrangement was kept after Sharp became chairman of the BBC.  This blind trust has professionally operated the ABCP GP Ltd and Atomyze Switzerland interest with complete independence from Mr. Sharp and the trust’s only direction since its establishment.

At the current time, the blind trust, and hence Mr. Sharp, have no financial or directorial interests in any business possessed and controlled by Mr. Potanin. mentions the spokesperson.


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