About us

The Zimin Foundation is a philanthropic organization established by the entrepreneur and engineer Dr Dmitry Borisovich Zimin (1933–2021) and his son Boris Zimin, with the aim of advancing science and education for the benefit of humanity.

Dr Zimin was a founder and honorary president of Vimpelcom (the Beeline brand ), the first Russian company listed on the New York Stock Exchange, through an IPO back in 1996, and which has since become VEON group.

After retiring and selling his controlling stake in Vimpelcom, in 2001, Dr Zimin devoted himself to philanthropy,  transferring 90% of his wealth to an endowment. For over a decade starting in 2002, his philanthropic activities focused mainly on Russia and were facilitated through the Dynasty Foundation. The Dynasty Foundation was managed by an independent Board, on which the Zimin family was represented by Dr Zimin and his son Boris.

Throughout its existence, the Dynasty Foundation supported thousands of students, young scientists, and teachers; more than 100 popular science books were published, and a plethora of events aimed at popularizing science were organized and supported.

In 2015 the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation labelled the Dynasty Foundation as a “foreign agent”, and the Board and the Zimin family made the difficult decision to wrap up the Foundation’s activities. Since then, the Zimin Foundation has continued the Zimin family’s philanthropic activities. While the Zimin Foundation continues the legacy of the Dynasty Foundation, its programmes are not focused on Russia, and the Foundation operates globally.

After Dr Zimin’s death, on 22 December 2021, his son Boris became the leader of all of the Zimin Foundation’s philanthropic activities.

our mission

The Zimin Foundation seeks to empower and inspire scientists, educators, and students to make the world a better place. We value innovation, freedom of thought, and moral integrity in furthering this mission.

Dr Dmitry Zimin (1933-2021)

Dr Zimin started from scratch more than once in his life. He had successful careers both as a scientist and as a businessman. He brought his doctoral degree in technical sciences and his vast experience as an engineer with him when he founded the now-famous Beeline network. Although he was no longer a young man when he did this, he achieved success, taking his company to the New York Stock Exchange. Then he retired and established the Dynasty Foundation.

In 2013 the Carnegie Trust recognized the activities of Dr Zimin: he became the first and the only Russian philanthropist awarded the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy. In 2015 Dr Zimin received an award for his commitment to science from the Ministry of Science and Education of thе Russian Federation.

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boris zimin

Boris Zimin was born in Moscow on November 24 1968 to Dmitry Zimin and Maya Zimina. Boris graduated from the Higher School of Economics.

In 2002 Boris became the president of BMT Management Ltd, which was responsible for managing investments of the endowment and the family. When the Dynasty Foundation was created, Boris supported his father in his philanthropic work first as a member of the Foundation’s Board and, from 2004, as its Chairman.

In early 2014 Boris initiated the establishment of the Sreda Foundation, a project aimed at supporting independent journalists and media in Russia. Boris Zimin is one of the public sponsors of the politician Alexei Navalny and the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK). In August 2020, he paid for Navalny’s emergency evacuation from Omsk to Berlin after the opposition activist had been poisoned with Novichok and put in a coma. Boris Zimin also provides support to political prisoners — both morally and financially. During the nationwide protests in Belarus after a rigged presidential election, Boris Zimin donated to the Belarus Solidarity Foundation.

Boris became the leader of all of the Zimin Foundation’s philanthropic activities following his father’s death on 22 December 2021. After the war broke out on February 24, 2022, the Zimin Foundation started several programs for refugees from Ukraine and Russia,mostly intended for scientists, students, and journalists. Boris Zimin is a member of The Russian Anti-War Committee and of The Russian Action Committee. Both organizations oppose the war unleashed by Putin and support the unity of anti-war and pro-democracy Russians. In 2022 Boris Zimin appointed Board Member of Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom.

On September 2, 2022, the Russian Ministry of Justice included Boris on its list of individuals acting as so-called foreign agents. On January 9, 2023, the Interior Ministry placed the philanthropist on the wanted list on charges of illegal alienation of common shares of a Russian company. The Investigative Committee has demanded that the charity patron be arrested in absentia. According to Boris Zimin, the case was filed for political reasons.

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