Richard Sharp, a former banker who is currently serving as the Chairman of BBC since February 2021, has reportedly been using an off-shore company to invest in a cryptocurrency-related business founded by a Russian oligarch.
Interestingly enough, the oligarch is now sanctioned because of the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.
- According to The Guardian, Sharp used a company registered in the Cayman Islands to invest in a cryptocurrency-related business called Atomyze.
- Atomyze is established in Switzerland by Vladimir Potanin – a well-known Russian Oligarch.
- Potanin is also commonly referred to as the Nickel King and is known to have ties to President Vladimir Putin. Notably, he was also one of the oligarchs invited to the Kremlin at the time Russia invaded Ukraine.
- The BBC Chairman reportedly invested in Atomyze back in 2019 using a company called ABCP GP Ltd., registered in the Cayman Islands.
- Atomyze is a platform that leverages blockchain-based technology to allow users to trade commodities – more specifically, metals produced by Potanin’s company.
- At the time, however, Sharp wasn’t serving as the Chairman of the BBC.
- A spokesperson for Sharp’s investment trust commented on the matter, saying that he had a “longstanding interest in a range of emerging technology” while also saying that, at the time, there were no sanctions imposed on Potanin.
- Also, Sharp had put his investments in a blind trust which represents an agreement that the funds are managed by a third party to completely avoid any possible conflicts of interest.
The arrangement was maintained after Sharp became chairman of the BBC. This blind trust has professionally managed the ABCP GP Ltd and Atomyze Switzerland interest with complete independende from Mr. Sharp and the trust’s sole direction since its establishment.
At the current time, the blind trust, and therefore Mr. Sharp, have no financial or directorial interests in any business owned and controlled by Mr. Potanin. – added the spokesperson.
Featured image courtesy of The JC