Jacob Rothschild, heir to the banking family, dies

by time news

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Lord Jacob Rothschild, financier, entrepreneur and member of the famous banking family, has died at the age of 87, as well as an independent member of the British House of Lords, by virtue of the title of 4th Baron Rothschild, from 1991 to 1998: the year in which a reform, to reduce the attendance of members of the Upper House to almost zero by hereditary right, deprived him of his seat together with others.

Son of Victor, 3rd Baron Rothschild, and of an Anglican Christian woman who converted to observant Judaism through marriage, Jacob studied at Oxford University and then trained as a financier in the family bank, NM Rothschild & Sons, starting in 1963 , and then set up his own company, J Rothschild Assurance Group together with Sir Mark Weinberg in 1980.

Remembered by his family as a philanthropist, he received the highest British honors from the royal family of Windsor during his lifetime and also held public positions as vice-president of the Sky television group or president of the committee of trustees of the National Gallery, London’s symbolic museum.

«Our father Jacob – the 4 children wrote in a message, specifying that the burial will take place in private according to the Jewish rite – was an eminent figure for many people… as an esteemed financier, champion of the arts and culture, devoted servant of public affairs, passionate supporter of charitable activities in Israel and for Jewish culture, enthusiastic environmentalist, friend, father and beloved grandfather.”

His business interests have mainly concerned finance, but have also ranged in other sectors such as oil: including an agreement signed in 2003 to try to put into custody (in vain) assets of the Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, opponent of Vladimir Putin , before their arrest and the de facto confiscation of his group, Yukos; or even the acquisition in 2013 from the Israeli government, through the company Genie Energy, of the exclusive right to exploit a crude oil field in the occupied Syrian Golan area.

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