“80% percentages of our income are given to society”. This is the main idea of Tereschenko family. The family that became rich regards to their open mind, enterprising and sugar beets.
The family business was started by Artemij Tereschenko in the early 19th century. He supplied the tsar army with provision during the Crimean war. In the middle of the 19th century, selfdom was cancelled and people who had money started to buy agricultural lands. At the end of the 19th century, Tereschenkos family had already 200 thousand hectares of the best black soil lands. First Artemij planted wheat. But wheat depends so much of the weather so he turned to sugar beets.
In some years he opened ten sugar factories. Artemij Tereschenko became a successful businessman but he didn’t spend his income on building villas and having a luxurious life. He usually woke up at 5 am. At 6 am. he visited his land and worked on the field in case of an emergency.
Artemij Tereschenko had so big income that he declared give to people needs 80% percent of his income. He built roads and whole streets for poor people, his workers had a good salary and social package. Till now Tereschenko family grandson receives letters from descendants of his grandfather’s workers. They write grateful stories about generosity of his famous family.
The Tereschenko’s also understood the importance of eternal things like art. They supported local artists and built the first art school in Kyiv. They gathered 15 thousand artworks and you can see them in former Tereschenko’s houses that they turned into museums.
One of the most famous family members was Mikhail Tereshchenko. His destine was living in the most difficult time when the Russian Empire turned into the Bolshevik state.
In his youth, he enjoyed his life and property of his family. He studied in the best universities of Europe and knew 13 languages.
Mikhail spent his adulthood in Monte Carlo. Actually, this man was always lucky in gambling. The young millionaire was considered as one of the best grooms over the Empire. But his heart was captured by French lady Margareta Noe.
They married soon and Mikhail was so happy that ask to find the most beautiful precious stone in the world for his wife. The young man presented her blue diamante 42 carats value. At that time it was the second biggest diamante in the world originally from India. Mikhail ordered Cartier to polish it and decorate within 47 small diamonds.
The last time Tereshchenko’s diamante was bought on auction in 1984.
In 1912 Mikhail Tereshchenko bought yacht Yolanda 127 meter long. Yolanda was built for the Italian king but he wasn’t able to buy it.
In his 30’s in 1917 Mikhail became the Minister of Finance in Provisional Government. However, the Bolshevik revolution changed his life forever. As one of the most active ministers in the government, he became Lenin’s enemy. When the Bolshevik took the Winter Palace over he and his wife were inside. Mikhail was sent to prison.
According to the family legend, Margareta offered her diamond to Lenin in return to Mikhail freedom. Lenin refused of the diamond but his mate Trotsky accepted an offer. Mikhail was transported to Baltic Sea where his yacht Yolanda took him to Europe.
Mikhail’s life was rescued but from this moment he needed to live far away from his motherland. He lost the biggest his family dream to change his country to better.
He was completely in debt as being the Minister took some million credits for Russian economy from the American bankers. USSR refused to return debt so Mikhail needed to do it himself.
But in some years he became rich again due to his talent. French milliner Rothschild called Tereshchenko “a financial genius”
He offered Ukrainian to head one of his banks in London. After a while Mikhail managed Viennese bank. In the day before Hitler took over Austria he transferred Austrian bank money to Monaco. In such a way he rescued money of millions depositors. Therefore Hitler called Tereshchenko his personal enemy.
As his son remembers Michel never spoke Russian or Ukrainian and never told about his life before. Just once he accidentally met the tall cheerful man in the street in Paris. He hugged him and greeted warmly. It was a Russian singer Chaliapin. Chaliapin often visited Kyiv with his concert.
Nowadays Michel Tereshchenko the Michel’s grandson lives in Ukraine and builds linen business here. He plants industrial linen and sells it to the biggest car companies. He moved here from France to develop Ukraine as his family did 100 years ago.