SNL's on a rerun week, so the writers have plenty of time to prepare for the return of LiLo on March 3. But here's a quick sketch pitch: Replace Russian oligarch and presidential candidate Mikhail Prokhorov with Fred Armisen and run this actual segment from an actual Russian comedy show word-for-word. Do not change the set. Do not change the words. Do not change the way they all bob their heads to the beat. Do nothing. In fact, maybe just get the rights and lift the entire thing. This is perfect as it is.
• More than two years after she first put it on the market, Gisele Bundchen has officially disposed of her triplex penthouse at 347 West 11th Street. The 1,700-square-foot apartment, which originally hit the market for $10.9 million and was listed for a much more modest $4.5 million when it went into contract late last month, sold for $4.4 million to a buyer identified in city property records as Lower West Side Manhattan R.E. [Cityfile]
• Steven "Mac" Heller, the former head of investment banking at Goldman Sachs, has sold his three-bedroom apartment at 14 East 75th Street. The 7th-floor co-op, which hit the market for $5.425 million in February, sold for $4.725 mil. to real estate investor Fred Schwalbe and his wife, Ruth. [Cityfile]
Some people have been a little troubled by the news a shady Russian billionaire is now buying up a local sports franchise (the Nets), as well as part of the arena that will eventually be the team's new home in Brooklyn. But not Jamie Johnson. The pharmaceutical heir and filmmaker thinks it's, like, the greatest news ever:
There's a new billionaire in town. And he happens to be single, too! This week, Russia's richest man, Mikhail Prokhorov, cut a deal with real estate developer Bruce Ratner to buy the Nets as well as part of the new Nets arena under construction in Brooklyn. Today the Times compares Prokhorov to one other non-married billionaire in New York, Mayor Michael Bloomberg. So how different are the two men? Let's take a look, shall we:
It's official. The richest man in Russia, Mikhail Prokhorov, has taken control of the New Jersey Nets. The 44-year-old oligarch, who is worth $9.5 billion according to Forbes, signed a $200 million deal today with real estate developer/Nets owner Bruce Ratner that will make him the principal owner of the team, as well as a major investor in the Nets' long-delayed new home in Brooklyn. This makes Prokhorov the first foreign owner of an NBA team who isn't Canadian, and the "the only NBA owner who can dunk," according to Prokhorov. And the tri-state area now has its very own Mark Cuban, clearly. [NYT]
The cruel blows of the recession have made a certain elite group even more elite: There are now only 49 Russian billionaires, half as many as there were a year ago, according to the annual ranking of Russia's wealthiest published today by Finans magazine. Last year's number one, aluminium magnate Oleg Deripaska, tumbled to number eight after losing $35 billion, and was replaced in the top spot by Mikhail Prokhorov, the nickel mogul (and Snob magazine backer), who is reportedly worth $14.1 billion. Roman Abramovich, despite seeing $9 billion disappear in the past year, still comes in at number two with an estimated net worth of $13.9 billion. He was also voted Russia's most interesting billionaire, an honor he clearly owes to his fiancée, everyone's favorite art patron Dasha Zhukova.
Russians are "not afraid" to call themselves snobs, says the spokewoman for a new magazine called, yes, Snob. Slated to debut next month and backed by playboy oligarch Mikhail Prokhorov (left), it's aimed at well-to-do, educated Russians, including those in New York, London and Paris, who, we're guessing, will be thrilled by the prospect of getting their fix of Dasha Zhukova news in actual Russian. [Independent]