Kanan Najafov was born in 1975. In 1997 he graduated from the International Law and International Relations Faculty of Baku State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in International Law. In 1999 he graduated from American University Washington College of Law with a Master’s Degree in International Business Law, and in 2003 he graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.
He started his career as an operations specialist at the World Bank Representative Office in Azerbaijan in 1996, and in 1999 he worked at the Washington and Baku offices of the law firm Baker Botts. In 2003-2008, he worked in the London and Aberdeen offices of BP PLC as a commercial and business development analyst. From 2008 to 2012, he worked as an investment analyst at Exane BNP Paribas and Vice President of CITIGROUP. In 2012-2015, he held the positions of Chief Strategy Administrator and Deputy Chief Executive Director of NOBEL OIL. During the next five years, he was engaged in private entrepreneurship, and since 2020, he has worked as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Entrepreneurship Development Fund of the Ministry of Economy.
On the 11th of August 2021, he was appointed Vice President of SOCAR according to the Order issued by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan.