Olga Slutsker isn’t afraid to flex muscles to stay on top of Russia’s booming health club business.
Russia’s elite knows the public face of Olga Slutsker, a onetime Soviet fencing pro and now owner of the nation’s largest chain of health clubs. Details of her private life–and exactly how she muscle-built her $100 million (sales) business–are another matter. The 42-year-old Slutsker lives with her husband, Vladimir (a wealthy man in his own right from commodities and banking), and two small children on a landscaped compound in a private beach community within the city of Moscow. It’s guarded by a security team that includes a roof sniper with an automatic rifle.
“What’s clear is that Slutsker’s World Class gyms, which charge up to $5,500 a year, have nearly 30% of the high-end market and count among their members some of Russia’s wealthiest and most powerful politicians. In April 2006 she sold 50% of her company for a reported $50 million to Alfa Capital Partners, a private equity unit of Alfa Group, which is controlled by Russia’s sixth-richest man, Mikhail Fridman (net worth: $13.5 billion).