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Annemarie van Gaal

International Entrepreneur, Co-Founder of Independent Media in Russia, 'Dragon' in Dutch 'Dragon's Den'


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In 1990 Annemarie co-founded media company Independent Media in Russia. Due to its unconventional approach to the market, Independent Media rapidly grew from a company with a turnover of $ 1.5 million and 15 employees in 1992 to the leading publishing house in Russia with a turnover of $ 80 million in 1998 and 700 employees.

The world of media;

Doing unconventional business;


Doing international business;

Women in international business




UK : £7k to £15k

Europe : £7k to £15k

US : £7k to £15k

Asia/Middle East : £7k to £15k

Travels From

The Netherlands

Independent Media has been awarded with numerous prizes and awards over the years, amongst others: 

- 'East Europe Prize for Enterprises'
- IPC Award for 'Best International Launch'
- The American Chamber of Commerce prize for 'Best Business in Russia'
- IPC Award for 'Best International Publishing joint venture' (jv with Hearst)
- Etc.

Since 1998 Independent Media is the leading publishing house in Russia and the Ukraine in the field of consumer magazines, newspapers and trade publications.

Independent Media publishes many consumer magazines (amongst others the Russian editions of Cosmopolitan, Good Housekleeping, Harper's Bazaar, Men’s Health etc.) and a number of newspapers (amongst others: The Moscow Times (English language daily, 1992), The St. Petersburg Times, Vedomosti (Russian language daily in a joint venture with Financial Times en The Wall Street Journal, since 1999)

In 2001 Independent Media was sold to the Finnish company Sanoma Media and Annemarie decided to leave Russia to provide a Dutch school education for her sons.

In the Nethelands she manages her own companies, and is active as a private equity investor in the Netherlands as well as abroad.

She is a leading columnist for the leading financial newspaper Financieel Dagblad t and author of several bestsellers on financial subjects. She is the presenter of various financial TV programs such as ‘Ten Einde Raad’, ‘Een Dubbeltje Op Zijn Kant’ and ‘DivorceHotel’. and was one of the ‘dragons’ in the Dutch version of ‘Dragon’s Den’. She is an advisor to many banks and insurance companies in the Netherlands as well as abroad.

Many of her activities and much of her time and profits currently go towards projects that help to eliminate poverty in the Netherlands.

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