Born September 8, 1950 in Omsk.
In 1989 he arrived to St.Petersburg from armed forces where he served on fleet as officer-submariner. First he worked as barman in pub "Zhiguli". Quickly enough he grew to the post of Bar Manager in pub "Zhiguli", and even finished a barman course. Probably having saved up a certain seed capital he started selling antiques. Co-operative society "Russia" became the first official commercial structure issued for his name.
Ilya Traber is the only serious businessman from an environment of Alexander Malyshev and his companions arrested in Spain, who did not come in view of European and Russian mass-media due to the scandalous operation "Three" . There is an opinion that Traber was just lucky: in days of arrests he was outside of Spain. Thus journalists noticed with references to the Spanish police that during listening of telephone conversations of Alexander Malyshev and Gennady Petrov Traber came in the view of police repeatedly. Meanwhile, influence of Traber on formal and informal business of many countries is so serious that his story is certainly worthy of a detailed learning.
For the first time he came in view of journalists in 1991 in connection with kind of positive event. While police continued unsuccessful struggle against antiques profiteering, a renovation-commercial center of St.Petersburg "Antiquary" traded in art objects for market prices quite legally; it was created with the assistance of the city authorities. The director of "Antiquary" Ilya Traber gave journalists an interview regarding the opening of the next shop-salon named "Petersburg". Journalists noticed that the Executive Committee of Petersburg became one of the founders of "Antiquary" which took care of buying up, safety, renovation and realization (including from auctions) of antiquities. Within its help the center received a monopoly on trade of the art values created till 1945.
Source: "Commersant" № 041, 10/14/1991
In 1993 rather negative publications about Ilya Traber began to appear in St.Petersburg press. In particular, on May 8, 1993 the newspaper "Smena" published an article "Hundred Friends of Antiques" with a subtitle "Family Portrait against the Criminal Code". The author asserted that in a renovation-commercial center headed by Mr. Traber incompetent people worked, "whose unqualified approach to antiques estimation affects the prices asked by Traber for the offered goods". Besides, the journalist accused the general director of relations with criminal structures. Having considered that published article discredited honor and dignity of him personally and employees of "Antiquary" Mr.Traber applied in court. Kuibyshev district people’s court of St.-Petersburg partially satisfied the claim about an honor and dignity protection of the general director of the renovation-commercial center "Antiquary" Ilya Traber against the office of St.Petersburg newspaper "Smena".
Source: "Commersant", № 237, 12/9/1993
In 1995 journalists already paid attention to business of Ilya Traber as he was rather advanced and even outstanding in his sector of business. Journalists mentioned that at that time in St.Petersburg almost all owners of antique shops confined themselves by their business. None of them did hope to create either a chain of shops, large trading or auction houses. Center "Antiquary" belonging to Ilya Traber was a unique exception. It included four salons, a salesroom, a restoration center, jeweler workshops and even a gallery of the academic painting.
Traber already then was in city authorities' good graces. At inauguration of the mayor of Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak Traber gifted him the bust of Catherine the Great as the representative of an antiquarian salon "Petersburg"
Source: "Commersant" № 126, 7/8/1995
Probably, in connection with mostly unexpected success of Ilya Traber descriptions of history of his business creation began to appear in Petersburg press. Here is one of them.
The renovation-commercial center "Antiquary" was created in December, 1991 by decision of Executive Committee of the Leningrad City Council. It was owned by Main Property Management Executive Committee, city branch of fund of culture, commercial bank of social development and reconstruction, and also a small enterprise "Petersburg". Soon Ministry of culture of RSFSR became a co-owner of “Antiquary”.
The small enterprise "Petersburg" was created by Lenkomissiontorg and co-operative society "Russia". Ilya Traber was the director of "Russia"; he also headed "Antiquary". The former arbitration judge Boris Sharikov became the Deputy director of "Antiquary" on a commercial part. In 1992 both of them became famous for appealingly simple ways of conducting a competitive struggle. On a way for Traber’s full monopoly in the market of antiques in Petersburg there was an antiquary located on Nalichnaya street. To be more exact, it was not shop but the fact that it belonged to R&D company n.a.Vutechich made Ilya Ilyich displeased. The head of "Antiquary" decided to correct this annoying unpleasantness.
The issue of transfer of unfortunate shop in Nalichnaya street to the property of "Antiquary" was discussed at the level of the high-profiled persons of the city. The efforts to that were put by such different people as mayor Anatoly Sobchak, chief of criminal investigation department Victor Egorshin, deputy of Leningrad City Council Valentine Dobrikov - the list could be continued.
Even in newspapers it was written that Anatoly Sobchak without hesitating of television cameras accepted works of art from Ilya Trabera as modest gifts. And Lyudmila Narusova often enough visited salons "Antiquary", and mister Traber regularly donated certain sums on the charitable program "Hospice" which was supervised by Sobchak’s wife. Anatoly Aleksandrovich took care of support for "Antiquary" by the Ministry of culture of RSFSR which under his petition was a part of founders of "Antiquary".
The head of St.Petersburg criminal investigation department of that time Victor Egorshin worked on transferring of the shop on Nalichnaya street to "Antiquary" in a different way. In his letter to chairman of Ministers Council of RSFSR Mr. Silaev he complained about preponderance of «criminals, speculators and secondhand dealers» at the entrance to that shop. According to the police general it was possible to struggle with notorious "criminals" only by transfer of the shop to the property of Traber, and not by any efforts of the employees of criminal investigation department subordinated to him.
Deputy of Leningrad City Council Valery Dobrikov actually represented interests of Ilya Traber in the city legislature. Still then, in 1992 large city newspapers wrote about the way «Dobrikov managed to sign on behalf of Leningrad City Council some documents associated with center "Antiquary". Besides, Valery Dobrikov personally carried the most significant documents for struggle of "Antiquary" for shop on Nalichnaya street from one high instance to another.
So by 1993 Ilya Traber became one of the largest figures in the Petersburg market of antiques. Almost each large illicit operation of those times connected with antiques had «Traber’s thread», according to some FSB employees. But there was never any sufficient reason to bring our hero to justice.
However, the market of antiques became too small for Ilya Traber soon enough. In February, 1993 in Petersburg there was information-legal bureau "Peter" organized; it was founded by three friends: Ilya Traber, Victor Korytov and Boris Sharikov. Within the help of Victor Korytov and Boris Sharikov our hero achieved the leading position in city antiquarian business. Actually, then those people made an informal team of the person aspiring to win the antiquarian Petersburg.
Source: «Your Private Councilor», August, 2000
In 2002 they described Ilya Traber as a businessman who had the most serious positions in the Petersburg sea port — the largest port of Europe.
Ilya Traber was then a member of boards of directors of two joint-stock companies: «Seaport of SPb» and «ABIP» («Association of the banks investing in the port»).Then «ABIP» was also the operating company of AO «Seaport of SPb».
Actually the "capture" of the port by Traber began in 1994. One can assume that Ilya Traber planned to become the fuel king of Petersburg then; it was possible only in the presence of one's own transport connections suitable for transporting large parties of mineral oil for export. For that reason our heroes began to develop the port from the fourth area where the bulk-oil terminal, the largest one in northwest region was settled down.
In 1989 Victor Barukov became a head of the tank farm – the talented economist, the competent head who tried to create a modern enterprise on a Western model on the place of old tank farm. He managed to achieve surprising results; the rent enterprise «Bulk-oil area» created by him became profitable, foreign partners appeared, together with them he planned to realize the grandiose international project «Gold gates».
In January, 1995 contract of rent between the joint-stock company «Bulk-oil area» and joint-stock company «Seaport of SPb» expired, it was necessary to make it prolonged not with «Bulk-oil area» but with created specially for the purpose a joint-stock company «Petersburg oil terminal». Information-legal bureau "Peter" actually belonging to our heroes, «Petersburg fuel company» and a certain English firm which true owners can be only guessed became owners of this joint-stock company.
Without any explanation of the reasons the general director of "Seaport" Victor Bilichenko refused to prolong the contract of the rent with management of «Bulk-oil area»; the new contract was signed with «Petersburg oil terminal». Thereby Victor Bilichenko openly declared about support of Traber for the first time, knowing people understood then that the destiny of port had been solved.
Within all 1993 the foreign organizations actively bought up shares of "Seaport" from its employees. To the beginning of 1998 the majority of voting actions of «Seaport of SPb» belonged to two foreign companies located in Great Britain and Liechtenstein. And responsible for that is the former general director of "Seaport" Victor Bilichenko who then - in 1993 – could have managed the largest port in Russia in an absolutely different way.
In 1993 Anatoly Chubays on behalf of the Russian government issued the order according to which 29 percent of shares of "Seaport" were supposed to become ordinary voting and to be fixed in the state property. (Originally according to the plan of privatization those shares were exclusive, that is, they did not have a vote, and were intended for sale). On July, 1st, 1993 the chairman of CPMC Sergey Belyaev even confirmed changes related to that order to the plan of privatization of "Seaport". It seemed it was just a step before the sea gate of the country remained in the state ownership, but a new surprising event occurred then.
In the documents submitted by employees of CPMC for the Fund of property there were two arithmetic mistakes because of which the process of return of the port in the state ownership was braked and then forgotten at all. Considering the rates of the game they assumped whether employees of CPMC of Petersburg of that time Tomchin and Lyubov Sovershaeva had mixed up some figures by chance?
In the summer of 1997 at the special meeting of shareholders of OAO "Seaport" the decision on transfer of all managerial powers of the port to a certain operating company was accepted. It was called «ABIP»; the majority of heads of the port at that moment did not even know about existence of such a firm. However, it is not surprising: Joint-Stock Company "ABIP" had been founded few months before it began to supervise the port.
50 % of shares of «ABIP» belonged to a certain foreign company with the intriguing name «Nasdor Incorporated» located in a princedom Liechtenstein.
In 1999 Traber, Korytov and Sharikov became actually sole masters of Seaport. They used again the worked out technology of smashing large enterprise into a few smaller; each of them owned a part of property of the parent enterprise that had created them initially.
Source: «Your Private Councilor», July, 2002
In connection with interest of Ilya Traber to «Incorporated ship-building corporation» journalists wrote about relations between Traber and oligarch Yury Kovalchuk. Journalistic interest was related to the plans on building of "ice" shipyards. They will be constructed in the Far East, the North and North-West of the country. In this connection in the northwest interests of the "Arkhangelsk" and "Petersburg" ship builders faced. In Arkhangelsk region the largest enterprise in the country works for constructing ice class vessels. It is a well-known "Sevmash" with 17 thousand employees working. Considering the scale and experience of "Sevmash" it would be logical to begin the revival of the factory at the expense of means of target program. But Yury Kovalchuk - the influential Petersburg businessman, the co-owner and chairman of the board of directors of the bank "Rossiya" actively opposes that.
He doesn't have any own interests in shipbuilding. But business interests connect Mr. Kovalchuk with Petersburg businessman Ilya Traber. According to journalists Traber made the strategic alliance with Kovalchuk. In exchange for support of political projects of the banker in Leningrad region he promised Traber lobby assistance in shipbuilding area.
Cumulative «penetrative force» of this tandem would be enough to outdo the enterprises even more influential than "Sevmash". So the state investments could bypass the withering Arkhangelsk ship builders.
Source: www.rospress.ru, 12/5/2007
When the vice-governor of Leningrad region Rashid Ismagilov applied for a post of the governor journalists wrote about his close acquaintance to the former senator from Nenets autonomous region and vodka king Alexander Sabadash. It was noticed, that at attempt of detention of Sabadash in Vyborg police found out Ismagilov and Ilya Traber. Presumably, they met Sabadash.
Source: «New newspaper in SPb», 2/15/2008
Already after arrest in Spain journalists remembered Ilya Traber again because his surname appeared in the interceptions of telephone conversations of Gennady Petrov made by Spanish special services. In particular data that Ilya Traber was attributed the extraction of incomes from frontier Vyborg with its illicit corridors conducting from EU to Moscow, and large industrial port in Primorsk was published. The press paid attention: Traber was one of the few who avoided arrest by the Spanish police; he is said to be in Russia during operation "Three".
In some mass-media together with Ilya Traber and Gennady Petrov already was called Igor Sechin's name, the former deputy head of the Kremlin administration, nowadays — one of vice-premiers of the government of Vladimir Putin. Acquaintance between Traber and Sechin could occur to a high probability in Petersburg at Sobchak’s period when Sechin headed a committee administration on external relations (which was supervised by the same Putin. One more person who can know something about Ilya Traber, — present head of Rosprirodnadzor Vladimir Kirillov. In a press of the 90's Kirillov was considered as opponent to Traber: being a mayor of Vyborg the present main ecologist tried not to admit businessmen from Petersburg to the city. However, according to mass-media, after Kirillov's moving for work in the regional government Vyborg was inherited by people of Traber and Petrov.
Source: «New newspaper», 6/19/2008
In 2009 Ilya Traber was mentioned by journalists in connection with scandal with the head of the Petersburg group "Oslo Marine" Vitaly Arkhangelsky which ran into debt to bank "St.-Petersburg" 4 billion rubles. Vitaly Arkhangelsky did not come back from abroad after summer holiday. He became Phillip Kirkorov's business partner in Bulgaria and operated the Russian actives through Skype.
"Lawyers do not recommend to me to come back to Petersburg yet", — Vitaly Arkhangelsky said then to journalists.
Bank "St.-Petersburg" took under control the port and insurance actives of "Oslo Marine". In this connection journalists noticed that strategy of Arkhangelsky was the aggressive credit policy and marvelously courageous business projects. It is unknown how it was possible for the group to generate affiliated structures with billion authorized capital stocks in order to be attractive for bankers. Experts of the sea market hinted at its possible communication with authoritative businessman Ilya Traber.
Source: www.dp.ru, 9/7/2009
It is interesting that Ilya Traber managed to get involved in an unpleasant incident with pirates capturing the vessel «Arctic Sea». Journalists wrote about one of Traber’s partners, pirate Dmitris Savins (Dmitry Savin) who was the top-manager and the co-owner of structures of the Estonian company As Alexela Logistics; it was the largest manager of terminals of small but proud republic.
When getting registrated during the trips Ilya Traber has been passing under the names of Ilyas Tramper, Ilias Traver with the certain mysterious numbers of personal papers distinctive from any Russian certificates. However the second and third citizenship is not forbidden in our country .
Company As Alexela Logistics is co-owner of Open Company «First Murmansk terminal» which manages transshipment at the northern borders of Russia. And among other founders of this Open Company there are high-rank persons (who got related with Traber in the mid of 90's) from administration of the Vyborg area of the Leningrad region, such as its former head Georgy Poryadin, his friend criminal authority Alexander Petrov, and Igor Konstantinovich Patraev who, as it is easy to assume, is a son of the present head of the Vyborg area.
Source: «Our version on Neva», 9/21/2009
And communication between Traber and Alexander Petrov’s son Vitaly who is the racer of "Formula-1" from a Renault team was more recently found out. Michael Schumacher's 25-year-old admirer, the graduate of Northwest academy of public service Vitaly Petrov signed the contract with the well-known French automobile concern "Renault". He became the first Russian participant of the well-known races of "Formula-1". Vitaly's success would be impossible without all possible means spent on him by his father – the known Vyborg businessman, the co-owner of Open Society «Vyborg ship-building factory» («VSF») and the Petersburg moorings «Baltic sheep engineering factory» Alexander Petrov. Petrov-senior specified that for the son’s promotion it was necessary to take the credit of 7,5 million euro in the bank "St.-Petersburg" under 8 annual interest rates, and the general expenses have made already 15 million euro. Besides Alexander Petrov declared to journalists that at the the age of 16- 25 about $20 million has been spent on preparations, competitions, and Vitaly's trips by him and his friends who helped: Ilya Traber and Alexander Ulanov.
Source: www.rospress.ru, 3/2/2010