Vladimir Sergeyevich Kim (Russian: Владимир Серге́евич Ким; born 29 October 1960) is a Kazakhstani businessman and billionaire who is the richest person in Kazakhstan. He made his wealth in Kazakhstan’s notoriously corrupt natural resources sector. He owns a network of offshore companies.
Vladimir Kim was born in 1960. He is of Korean ethnicity. His family, among other Koreans and many other ethnic minorities within the USSR, had been forcibly relocated to Kazakhstan during the Stalinist era. He graduated from the Kazakh Leading Academy of Architecture and Civil Engineering (then known as the Alma-Ata Architectural Institute) in 1982 with a degree in civil engineering. He holds an MBA degree and received his PhD in business and administrative management at the John F. Kennedy University in California in 1998.
In 1995, Kim was appointed managing director and chief executive officer of Zhezkazgantsvetmet JSC, Kazakhmys‘ core subsidiary at the time; he was elected chairman of the board of directors of Zhezkazgantsvetmet in 2000, and Chairman of Kazakhmys upon its listing on the London Stock Exchange in October 2005. Kim stepped down as chairman of Kazakhmys in May 2013 to become a non-executive director. Following the completion of the Group restructuring in 2014, Kim remained a non-executive director and a major shareholder in KAZ Minerals PLC.
He holds approximately 33% of KAZ Minerals.
According to Forbes magazine, in March 2011, he was the richest person in Kazakhstan, and the 223rd richest in the world, with an estimated wealth of US$4.7 billion. The Sunday Times Rich List in 2020 estimated his net worth to be £579 million, a £219 million decrease on the previous year.