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Augie K. Fabela II

Augie K. Fabela II

Augie K. Fabela II was born in 1966 in Chicago, Illinois.  Mr. Fabela developed his entrepreneurial spirit early in life working in his father’s engineering business from the age of thirteen.


Following his graduation from Stanford in 1987 with a Master’s degree in International Policy Studies and a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations, Mr. Fabela spent two years working in Tokyo, Japan working for media conglomerate Fuji TV before returning to the United States to start his own business. Over the next few years, he started and led several successful businesses as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, including FGI Wireless Ltd., a private investment company, Maestro, an international marketing consulting company and TDF Corp, an information technology company. He became Chairman of Plexsys International (Comsat RSI Wireless), an American mobile infrastructure equipment manufacturer, after acquiring the company together with his father.
At the invitation of MAK Vimpel, a Russian defense contractor, Mr. Fabela first visited Russia in 1991. It was during this period that he saw the significant opportunity for wireless in Russia. It was also when he met his future partner in Dr. Dmitri B. Zimin, a senior scientist at the Radio Technical Institute, a division of MAK Vimpel.  Inspired to do what everyone said couldn't be done, Mr. Fabela and Dr. Zimin set out to accomplish their vision of bringing basic wireless communications to Russia. A young American entrepreneur who was only 25 years old and spoke no Russian and a 63 year old Russian scientist who spoke no English, were determined to build an independent company with an entrepreneurial and pioneering spirit--which led to the founding of VimpelCom in 1992.
One year later, VimpelCom launched its first commercial network, a five base station system in Moscow, limiting sales to only 1,000 mobile phones in order to ensure quality of service. The commercial service was launched under the Beeline brand, a brand created by Mr. Fabela in late 1993 to differentiate the company as a youthful and fun company, rather than a technical company.
During these early years, Mr. Fabela devoted himself to the development of VimpelCom, serving as Chief Operating Officer. His expertise in marketing, customer care and finance were central to the Company’s early success and a legacy of excellence that continues today. Mr. Fabela inspired the Company’s core values of transparency, strong corporate governance, quality and innovation.
In 1995, Mr. Fabela and Dr. Zimin made the decision to take VimpelCom public on the New York Stock Exchange and one year later the initial public offering took place, with VimpelCom becoming the first Russian company to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange. Mr. Fabela became the youngest Chairman of am NYSE listed company. In the years that followed, Mr. Fabela led the teams that consummated multiple ground-breaking capital markets and M&A transactions, including the equity investments into OJSC VimpelCom by Telenor in 1998 and Alfa Group in 2000.  As Chairman, Mr. Fabela successfully worked with OJSC VimpelCom’s management and shareholders to ensure that the highest standards of corporate governance were maintained, and that all parties were working together to achieve the maximum growth for VimpelCom.  The commitment to these two key principles endures at VimpelCom Ltd. today.
Mr. Fabela was named the Company’s Chairman Emeritus after stepping down as Chairman in 2002 to dedicate time to his family. In hs role, of Chairman Emeritus, he has continued to be an active and valued advisor to the Company’s management and Board, providing guidance and insight on the strategic directions VimpelCom has taken.
Mr. Fabela continues to be an innovator in business policy and governance, serving as a member of the World Economic Forum (Davos), the RAND Business Leaders Forum and as Chairman of ELC Industries, a U.S. defense contractor. Mr. Fabela is a devoted philanthropist and civic contributor. He and his wife founded the Fabela Family Foundation, a foundation that supports early childhood education and Christian initiatives, as well as an advisor to the Dmitri B. Zimin Dynasty Foundation. Mr. Fabela is also a police officer, with the rank of Deputy Commander, volunteering on the AirOne Helicopter Search and Rescue Unit in Illinois, USA.

Dmitry Zimin
Augie K. Fabela II

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