Vasil Bozhkov is Bulgaria’s richest man with a net worth of about $1.5 billion, he was born on July 29th, 1956 in Velingrad a town in the southern half of Bulgaria. He is nicknamed the Skull due to his head shape and has rumoured links in crime and the Bulgarian mafia. However he has never been convicted of any crimes which may be due to the amount of corruption in Bulgaria despite things getting better lately. So its innocent until proven guilty but it is not like every billionaire is accused of being part of the Bulgarian mafia which as the end of communism in Bulgaria could do what they wanted in the anarchy that ensued.
Bozhkov has holdings in over 30 companies but started out initially by creating money exchanges and later opening betting shops and casinos with hotels being added to his portfolios later on. Some might compare him to another oligarch like the ones that rose to unimaginable wealth in Russia during the fall of communism there. However Bulgaria has virtually no natural resources of real value therefore Bozhkov is not an oligarch. But his rise is definitely extraordinary; communism ended in Bulgaria in 1989 and by 2005 Bozhkov was worth over $500 million.
Bozkhov is also a famous collector of art and particular historical artefacts from the Thracian region that makes up parts of modern day Bulgaria, Greece, FYROM, Turkey and Albania. He is the owner of the Thrace Foundation which holds exhibitions worldwide of priceless Thracian historical artefacts around the world. Notable artefacts including rhytons owned by various Thracians royals from thousands of years ago and also collection of swords and other weapons in pristine condition.
Little is known about Bozhkov’s personal life, he is known to have a son who is now in his twenties and is a support for CSKA Sofia with Bozhkov himself being a major shareholder of the club before problems that caused him to step down and even consider making his own rival CSKA Sofia club.
Bozhkov remains Bulgaria’s richest person and has been Bulgaria’s richest person for close to ten years, he is not the first Bulgarian tycoon to be accused of links with organised crimes however Bozhkov has managed to literally survive the longest. Many of Bulgaria’s richest businessman with links to the mafia have had violent ends. Whatever the truth may be Bozhkov will still have a mark on Bulgarian history by being one of the few Bulgarian billionaires and one of the top 50 richest Eastern Europeans.