Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova fight for Caspian seal conservation


Charity foundations gets more and more involved in environmental protection. One of the oldest charity funds in the Kazakhstan, Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova ‘Saby’, is one of the most active here. It picked an amazing and ambitious battle to save the endangered Caspian seal from extinction. Caspian seal, an unique animal is really in danger of total extinction. The colonies shrunk ten times in just a century.

Caspian seal population is shrinking due to the a number of factors. Most of them is related to the human activity in the region, climate change and introduction of new diseases. The situation is aggravated by the very nature of the beast’s biology. It is migratory and the area is divided between multiple states. It spells additional challenges to the conservation efforts. Any activities are effective only if coordinated. Few nations pay as much attention to the Caspian seal: this animal is lucky to have Saby fund support behind it. It is not one-time effort: it is work for decades.

Kenges Rakishev and Aselle Tasmagambetova quest to save Caspian Seals

Aselle Tasmagambetova and Kenges Rakishev in collaboration with the state marine scientific institute have opened the Caspian Seal Conservation Center. It is a modern institution which sports veterinary equipment, special pools, scientific tools and most important – a team of scientists, enthusiasts and volunteers backed by Saby charity fund.

One of the most important parts of the Center is the hospital where sick and weakened are rehabilitated. Kenges Rakishev assumes that nursing and veterinary aid is not enough to make the population grow. International cooperation is badly needed. Aselle Tasmagambetova called for it on the last Caspian Dialogue forum.

Seals are in need of protection from human activities and domesticated animals. Sometimes stray dogs are killing the seal cubs. But the main trouble is that dogs spread diseases that are contagious for the seals. Poachers are accountable for some seal loss, but due to strict laws and Saby educational programs the poaching is on decline.

As for today local climate change is perhaps one of the most difficult challenges to overcome. We wish success to Kenges Rakishev, Aselle Tasmagambetova, all Saby charity donors, volunteers, scientists and veterinary doctors of the Seal Conservation Center.

Kenges Rakishev’s Investments

Rakishev Kenges is a Kazakhstani entrepreneur who is among the wealthiest people in the country. His fortune is $684,000,000, which allowed the businessman to take 5th place on the Forbes wealthiest list of the republic.

During his career, Kenges Rakishev has built a diverse investment portfolio that crosses several sectors. However, his main passion is technological innovation. As angel investor and Managing Partner at Singulariteam, Rakishev has invested in multiple early stage start-ups across the tech industry. These ventures include a blockchain smartphone, a ride-share platform, digital diagnostic tools for the detection of genetic mutations, augmented reality hardware, drones that operate in space, and voice-based emotions analytics. Several of them have since met – if not exceeded – their potential.

Kenges Rakishev, the internationally acknowledged venture capitalist, he has joined Top-15 list of the most influential – and rich – businessmen in Kazakhstan. Although It is not the first time he got such nomination. In fact he is residing in Forbes’ Top-20 seven years in a row. He joined the club with his USD 332 million in assets in 2012.

Kenges Rakishev owns Fincraft Investment House, formerly known as BTA Securities and is a major owner of Fincraft Resources with 97,85 percent share. Fincraft Resources is also known under its former name, SAT&Company. By owning the later he owns “Aqtau Bitum”, “Eptic Ferro-nickel”. He owns 18,3 percent share of NASDAQ-listed NetElement. He owns 93,28% of BTA Bank which is active on Ukrainian and Byelorussian markets. BTA Bank was active in Kyrgyzstan and was sold to the interested party in June 2019.