Kazakh Dealmaker Finds Profit, Peril in Central Asian Stans

Private equity investor Aidan Karibzhanov is chasing riches in the rough-and-tumble former Soviet Republics.
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Aidan Karibzhanov in front of the Visor Holding headquarters in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Photographer: Petr Antonov/Bloomberg Markets

From the second-floor balcony of his spacious hillside home in Almaty, Kazakhstan, Aidan Karibzhanov takes stock of his sprawling empire, which stretches over some of the world’s most resource-rich and politically challenging territory. He looks out at the high-rise headquarters his Visor Holding investment firm shares with the Ritz-Carlton hotel. To the southwest, beyond the snowcapped Trans-Ili Alatau mountains, Visor owns Kyrgyzstan’s top grocery chain, and Karibzhanov has invested more than $200 million in that country’s second-largest gold mine, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its September issue. Closer to home, Visor owns a cement plant and an oil company in Karibzhanov’s native Kazakhstan.

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