Interros business activity has been inexorably linked with philanthropy for more than twenty years. In 1999 Vladimir Potanin created his Foundation in order to make philanthropic work more effective and systematic. As one of the first Russian institutions of its kind, the Foundation brought professionalism to philanthropic projects in education and culture.
The Foundation was quick to define its number one priority — giving support to emerging leaders. Only they can lead by example, create a following, and foster an environment for positive change. The Foundation is looking for the best. Fostering leadership is key to solving systemic issues on any scale and in any domain. Money given to a leader gets invested in the leader’s own development; leaders build projects sustainably to make sure they have a post-grant life, as we call it at the Foundation.
Vladimir Potanin finances the Foundation’s operations out of his own capital to the tune of more than 300 million rubles per year.
The Vladimir Potanin Foundation
Russian International Olympic University (RIOU) is a unique educational institution that was founded under the auspices of the International Olympic Committee during the preparation for the 2014 Olympic Games. The University’s main goal is to train a new generation of sports managers who will work in Russia and throughout the world, and will be a part of the Olympic movement.
Interros is the only sponsor of the project. In just under three years, the company built a high-tech campus on the Sochi seashore, and made a substantive contribution to structuring academic life at the university.
The university can train up to 500 students at any given time, and up to 2000 go through the university’s various programs every year.
RIOU’s instructors are well-known Russian and international experts in sports management from leading universities in ten countries.
The Master of Sports Administration program was launched in 2013.
Interros has invested $500 million in RIOU construction, of which some $150 million came from the company’s own funds as a philanthropic contribution.
Russian International Olympic University
Vladimir Potanin was one of the first Russian business leaders to take the Giving Pledge, joining Bill Gates’ and Warren Buffett’s global initiative in February 2013.