TOP 100 POWERFUL ARAB TAHT MATTER [Gulf Business (United Arab Emirates)]
(Gulf Business (United Arab Emirates) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) 2012 was a rejuvenative year for the Gulf states. With the easing of Arab unrest fears and the slow, pocketed healing of the global economic crisis, the GCC was once again able to focus its efforts on diversification. With the resumption of large-scale non-oil initiatives came a flurry of activity: construction projects, materials, services, staffing, money - and, most of all, renewed hope and ambition.
Dubai, in particular, regained its bon viveur as a 'safe haven' amid continued unrest in Egypt, Syria and Bahrain. The UAE in general saw an uplift in rents, tourism and trade as visitors and new residents flocked to the country. As a result, many of the UAE's key players - which make up 19 per cent of the list - have seen a boost in their rankings in the annual Gulf Business power issue.
It's no surprise that our second annual list of the world's most influential Arabs is topped by February cover star HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal AlSaud, chairman of Saudi's Kingdom Holding Company. The Prince enjoyed an extraordinary year as his share price more than doubled in 2012 and profits leapt by 10.6 per cent for the year. In our world exclusive interview on page 66, we reveal the businessman's secret for sustained high-level performance.
As our list shows, Saudi Arabia and Qatar continue to be leading light countries in terms of infrastructure, power base and riches. Almost 30 per cent of the world's most powerful Arabs were born and raised in Saudi Arabia.
Qatar also has a strong presence in the list, with 12 per cent of the world's influential Arabs residing in the tiny state. "The pygmy with the punch of a giant" - as the Economist likes to term it - has the rest of the world hanging on its words as it looks to invest its $115 billion oil and gas treasure chest. The emirate has invested £13 billion in London alone, while the upcoming Doha World Cup 2022 has spawned a whole new slew of bidders.
The Middle East possesses a large and growing population, unsaturated markets and dazzling long- term plans for the future. The Gulf Business Power 100 is a list of the people who will make it happen.
HOW WE DID IT
We assembled a team of experts from within Motivate Publishing's broad business division - including the Gulf Business team itself, which has decades of experience working with and reporting on regional business and current affairs.
We looked at the events of 2012, in particular, and judged each individual case on power merit. We weighted our criteria on a points system across the following spheres of influence:
? Financial capital ? Human capital ? Expansion plans ? Personal fame levels. In general, we have excluded politicians and royalty, unless the contenders have a strong leaning towards business activity. We have also included Arabs from across the world. The Gulf Business 100 Most Powerful Arabs is intended to be an inspirational representation of some of the Arab world's greatest achievers and future makers.
Top 100 Powerful ARABS
HRH PRINCE ALWALEED BIN TALAL BIN ABDULAZIZ ALSAUD, chairman, Kingdom Holding Company
As the world's most powerful Arab, the Prince's influence pervades global finance, real estate, politics, media, health, education and philanthropy.
With an estimated personal wealth of over $27 billion - up from around $23 billion last year - the founder and chairman of Kingdom Holding doubled his firm's share price in 2012.
Under the umbrella of Kingdom Holding, Prince Alwaleed has acquired increasingly shrewd and famous investments over time. He set up his company in 1979 and, today, the Prince owns stakes in Citibank, Movenpick Hotels, Walt Disney, Apple Inc, News Corp, Twitter and PepsiCo, among others.
2012 was a busy one for Prince Alwaleed. He set the wheels in motion for the launch of the new Arab TV channel, Alarab. The Prince is also busy working on Kingdom Tower over a five-year period - which is set to be the tallest building in the world when finished.
But the Prince tells Gulf Business that he is happiest when masterminding philanthropic initiatives with his wife Princess Ameerah. The Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation is a global charity that touches numerous lives with health, education and emergency assistance initiatives.
See our exclusive interview on pg.66 for more details on the Prince's plans for 2013.
02 HH SHEIKH AHMED BIN SAEED AL MAKTOUM, chairman, Emirates/Emirates NBD Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Transport As chairman of Emirates, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum oversaw bumper profits of $629 million in the 2011-2012 financial year and remains at the helm of the airline's ambitious expansion plans.
Sheikh Ahmed is also the chairman of two of Dubai's largest government vehicles: Emirates NBD and Dubai World.
The uncle of the current ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Sheikh Ahmed is also the deputy chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, as well as the chairman of Noor Bank and flydubai.
KHALID AL FALIH,
CEO, Aramco Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Energy Government-owned Saudi Aramco is the world's largest crude exporter. The firm manages
proven reserves of 260.1 billion barrels of oil and manages the fourth- largest gas reserves in the world, around 279 trillion cubic feet. Al Falih has worked his way up the ranks to the top seat at the oil giant since joining in 1979. Most recently, the CEO masterminded the multi- billion dollar Sahara project, the world's
largest petrochemical facility ever built in a single phase in conjunction with Dow Jones.
04 ALI BIN IBRAHIM AL NAIMI, Petroleum and mineral resources minister Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Energy
As presider over the world's largest oil reserves, Saudi Arabian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali bin Ibrahim Al-Naimi plays a critical role in the future of energy. Al-Naimi is highly respected in the country due to his wide experience within the industry. As the world's economic outlook continues to fluctuate, Al-Naimi looms large in oil supply decisions.
05 MOHAMMED AL MADY, CEO, SABIC
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Industry Al Mady has spent the last 15 years as CEO completing the dramatic transformation of SABIC into the world's biggest chemical maker. He took over in 1998 and continued its expansion to become the largest listed company in the Middle East. SABIC grew from a firm that employed six people in 1976 to one that employs 33,000 staff and boasts a market capitalisation of over $71 billion.
06 MOHAMED ALI ALABBAR, chairman and CEO, Emaar
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Real Estate The chairman, who has been instrumental in shaping the region's real estate landscape, is also a trusted advisor to Dubai's Ruler, HH Sheikh Mohammed. In a sign that Emaar has balanced its books after Dubai's real estate crisis, the company announced a H1 2012 net operating profit of $332 million - 45 per cent higher than the same period in 2011. Charismatic Alabbar runs 60 global companies beneath the Emaar banner, spanning global real estate, health and services.
07 MOHAMMED EL ERIAN, CEO, PIMCO
Origin: Egypt Residence: US Sector: Finance
As the boss of investment firm PIMCO, one of the world's largest bond investors, El Erian currently has around $1.92 trillion in assets under his control. As CEO, El-Erian is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the firm and leading its operations globally. His book, When Markets Collide, was a bestseller, and named one of the best business books of all time by The Independent.
08 AHMAD MOHAMED AL SAYED, CEO, Qatar Holding
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Finance
Al Sayed is working closely with the Qatari prime minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani to invest the country's gas riches. The CEO has significant influence at the to level where decisions are made. Ahead of the Olympics, Al Sayed is also said to be a powerful gatekeeper of the Qatar World Cup 2022 opportunities in the fast growing country.
09 CARLOS GHOSN, chairman and CEO, Renault/Nissan Origin: Lebanon Residence: Brazil Sector: IndustryGhosn shot to fame in the 1990s for his miraculous turnaround of ailing carmaker Nissan, taking the Japanese firm from a $6 billion loss to a $2.7 billion profit in just one year. Nicknamed "Mr. Fix It", he runs both Nissan and Paris-based Renault, and has won plaudits for his decision to use his two firms to jointly develop the world's first lineup of electric cars, starting with the Nissan Leaf.
new REEM ASAAD, 10 women'srightsadvocate
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Culture and society In 2008, a Saudi writer launched a campaign to boycott lingerie shops that only employed men. This gained international recognition, and - with a subsequent local decree - instantly created 44,000 jobs for women.
Alongside promoting female employment in Saudi Arabia, Asaad continues to work on a road map for long-awaited labour reforms in the Kingdom.
11 SAMAgovernor Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance
Dr AlMuburak was appointed as governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) in December 2011. As the man who presides over the central bank of the Gulf's richest and most populous nation, Mubarak's power and influence is considerable. The governor will be pivotal in maintaining Saudi Arabia's current economic boom.
12 MOHAMED BIN ISSA AL JABER, chairman and CEO, MBI International Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Real Estate Saudi billionaire Mohamed Bin Issa Al Jaber's conglomerate MBI International has its fingers in many sectors. Its reach extends to hotels, real estate, oil and gas and agro- industries in Europe, the Middle East and the
US. MBI currently has a net asset value in excess of $9 billion. Al Jaber himself is valued at more than $12 billion, according to recent estimates.
13 BAKR BIN LADEN, chairman, Bin Laden Group
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Real Estate Bakr bin Laden is the chairman of a colossal construction conglomerate, the Saudi Binladin Group. The group has been involved with several major projects in the country, including the King Abdullah Economic City, the King Abdul Aziz International Airport, and the King Saud University. The property giant has also signed a $1 billion deal to build the world's tallest building, the Kingdom Tower, in Jeddah.
14 LUBNA OLAYAN, CEO, Olayan Financing Company
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance One of the region's most influential businesswomen, Lubna Olayan manages numerous investments under the billion-dollar Olayan Financing Company (OFC), which manages all of the family's investments.
The Olayan family itself is thought to be worth around $12.4 billion. Established in 1947, the Olayan Group began as a logistics firm, but has grown into a vast conglomerate that owns over 50 companies with stakes in various companies.
DR FAHAD ALMUBARAK,
15 KHALDOON KHALIFA AL MUBARAK, CEO and managing director, Mubadala Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Finance
Al Mubarak is a prolific businessman and a trusted advisor to the Crown Prince, HH Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The Emirati now sits at the helm of Mubadala Development Company - Abu Dhabi's billion-dollar sovereign wealth investment vehicle, with high profile stakes in numerous firms across the world. Outside of the business world, he is more widely known as the chairman of Manchester City Football Club.
16 SHEIKHA LUBNA AL QASIMI, UAE minister of Foreign Trade
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Government
The UAE's Minister of Foreign Trade is a powerful woman; she became the first woman to hold a cabinet position in the country when she was appointed as the Minister of Economy in 2004. She was appointed to her current position in 2008 - spearheading six per cent annual growth in Dubai trade in 2012. She is ranked #92 in the Forbes 2012 world's most powerful women list.
new SARAH ATTAR & WODJAN ALI SERAJ 17 ABDULRAHIM SHAHERKANI,
Olympic athletes Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Culture and society Though they didn't win any medals, Attar and Shaherkhani were two of the most talked about athletes at the London 2012 Summer Games as they became the first female athletes from Saudi Arabia to take part. They marked a new world-first for the Olympics and for women's rights in the Kingdom.
18 ABDUL AZIZ AL GHURAIR, CEO, Mashreq
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Finance
Leading the bank founded by his father during the oil boom in 1967, Al Ghurair has been widely credited with taking Mashreq's total assets to around $20 billion. Al Ghurair is also the chairman of DIFC Authority, chairman of Emirates Banks Association and on the board of Emirates Foundation. With a net worth of $2.7 billion in 2012, he's now the richest man in the UAE.
19 MOHAMMED ALSHAYA, chairman, MH Alshaya
Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Retail
As the executive chairman of Kuwait-based MH Alshaya, the retail division of the Alshaya Group, Mohammed Alshaya handles some of the biggest brands in the world. The firm has further announced plans to open 1,250 stores years, creating an estimated 4,000 jobs. The over the next few holding company, Alshaya Group, is also sizeable and has interests spanning real estate, construction, hotels, IT and advertising.
SHEIKH SULAIMAN BIN ABDULAZIZ AL-RAJHI, chairman, Al Rajhi bank Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance Saudi born Sheikh Sulaiman Al-Rajhi has supervised a strong performance for Al Rajhi Bank, the Kingdom's largest Islamic lender. Al Rajhi saw its 2012 net profit increase seven per cent year-on-year to SAR7.9 billion. A lot of the firm's success can be attributed to the stewardship of Sheikh Sulaiman, who has also amassed a personal fortune of $7.7 billion.
new MANAL AL SHARIF, 21 driver
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Culture and society An accelarative force behind the campaign to abolish the driving ban on women in Saudi, Al Sharif gained international recognition after she posted a YouTube video of herself flouting the ban. Despite being arrested by Saudi authorities, she has been relentless in her efforts and was named one of Time Magazine's Most Influential People in 2012.
AKBAR AL BAKER,
22 CEO,QatarAirways Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Transport Al Baker is CEO of the region's second largest airline after Emirates. Qatar Airways flies to 122 destinations and has 250 aircraft on its order books worth more than $50 billion. Al Baker also heads the Doha
International Airport, where he is overseeing the development of Qatar's new multi-billion dollar airport, scheduled for its soft launch in April 2013.
newMANSOUR SALEH AL-MAIMAN, 23 chairman,NationalCommercialBank
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance Al-Maiman is at the helm of Saudi's biggest bank, National Commercial Bank (NCB), which had assets of over $90 billion at the end of 2012. NCB achieved a profit of SAR6.45 billion in 2012, a mammoth 7.3 per cent increase over the SAR6.01 billion profit achieved in 2011. Al-Maiman was previously secretary general of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Fund.
24 HH SHEIKHA MOZA BINT NASSER, chairwoman, Qatar Foundation
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Culture and society Qatar's pre-eminent social reformer, Sheikha Moza has played a major role in spearheading various national and international development projects. She was a driving force behind Education City and Al Jazeera Children's Channel, and was also named as one of Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women at number 74.
25 ABDULLA NASSER AL SUWAIDI, director general, ADNOC
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Energy
Even as Arab states look to diversify from oil-led growth, Al Suwaidi's role in the UAE's state-run oil producing giant ADNOC continues to be pertinent. As director of Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company and a board member of several organisations, Al Suwaidi has been instrumental in renegotiating contracts with foreign companies and pushing oil concessions forward with new partners.
26 IBRAHIM DABDOUB, group CEO, NBK
Origin: Palestine Residence: Kuwait Sector: Finance
Despite Kuwait's dormant government spending, underperforming stock market and geopolitical strife, Dabdoub led the NBK Group to increase its assets by $51.1 billion in H1 2012. With more than 50 years n Kuwait's largest bank the Palestinian-born financier is looking to drive growth at NBK through diversification and international expansion.
27 SHEIKH KHALID BIN KHALIFA AL THANI, CEO, Qatargas
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Energy Having built one of the world's most successful companies in less than three years, Al Thani has made Qatargas the largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) producing company in the world, with an annual of 42 million tonnes, supporting Qatar's quest to become the largest LNG producer in the world.
new THORAYA AHMED OBAID, 28 Shuracouncilmember Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Government
In a further push towards reforms in Saudi Arabia, the all-male 150-member Shura Council appointed 30 women, one of which was Obaid. No stranger to making history, in 2001 Obaid was appointed head of the United Nations Population Fund, becoming the first Saudi Arabian female to be named head of a UN agency. She is also the first Saudi woman to receive a government scholarship to study at an American university.
DR. CHARLES ELACHI,
29 director,JetPropulsionLaboratory Origin: Lebanon Residence: US Sector: Science
3% 3% Probably the world's best-known Arab scientist, Elachi garnered further international fame in 2012 when he oversaw this century's biggest scientific achievement: NASA's Curiosity rover landing in Mars. No wonder Then that he's already received awards such as the General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award - the highest honour given by the Space Foundation - and The Legion of Honour - the highest decoration in France.
Origin: Lebanon/Paris Residence: Lebanon Sector: Culture and society
A name synonymous with haute couture in the Middle East, Saab's fame grew to international proportions when he dressed stars like Scarlett Johansson, Halle Berry, Taylor Swift and Charlize Theron. 2012 was peppered with his brand's expansion into new markets like the Americas, Europe and Asia.
31 SHEIKH WALEED BIN IBRAHIM AL IBRAHIM, group chairman, MBC Group Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Media
Side-stepping the deliberation that encumbers most incumbents, Al Ibrahim is successfully driving the MBC Group - the region's largest media and entertainment company. From cross-over marketing channels to multi- language news portal, MBC has also successfully evolved its social media brand.
new ALI SHAREEF AL EMADI, 32 groupCEO,QatarNationalBank
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Finance Al Emadi has spearheaded Qatar National
Bank's (QNB) phenomenal growth and international expansion. The GCC's largest bank, QNB boasts a collosal 45 per cent market share of Qatar's total banking assets.
Al Emadi also serves on the boards of Qtel, Tunisian Qatari Bank and Union of Arab Banks.
33 SHEIKH SALEH KAMEL,
chairman,DallahAlbaraka Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance
With over four decades of experience, it's no wonder that Kamel is one of the most reputed businessmen in the region with a net worth of $1.7 billion according to Forbes 2012. When he's not heading the conglomerate, Kamel serves as president of the Saudi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and chairman of the General Council of Islamic Banks, among other positions.
HASSAN ABDULLAH AL THAWADI, 34 secretarygeneral,Qatar2022Supreme Committee
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Culture and society
Tackling everything from corruption allegations to an intensive bidding process, Al Thawadi is the kingpin of the FIFA World Cup 2022, the largest sporting event the Middle East has seen. As the event hurls into an estimated cost of around £138 billion, it will rightly keep on capturing global attention.
new MAHMOOD HASHIM AL KOOHEJI, 35 CEO,Mumtalakat
Origin: Bahrain Residence: Bahrain Sector: Finance Kooheji was appointed as the CEO of Bahrain's $9.1 billion sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat in March 2012 and now oversees its stakes in over 35 commercial entities, including Bahrain Telecommunications Co (Batelco), Gulf Air, and Aluminium Bahrain (Alba). Kooheji is also the chairman of Alba, one of the world's largest aluminium smelters.
SUAD AL HUMAIDI,
36 investor Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Finance
With an estimated personal wealth of $3 billion, Al Humaidi is widely regarded as an ambassador of the influential Al-Humaidi clan, as well as the face of businesswomen in the Middle East. The Kuwaiti investor has stakes in several banks, including NBK - the country's largest lender - and owns commercial and residential property across the region.
new MORSI ARAB, 37 chairman,InternationalDiabetesAssociation, EMME region Origin: Egypt Residence: Egypt Sector: Science
The Middle East is the most diabetes-blighted region in the world, with an astounding 9.2 per cent prevalence rate. This figure is set to double within the next two decades. As the regional chairman of the International Diabetes Association, Arab is a man who holds the power to influence the health of 300 million people.
SHEIKH AHMED BIN JASSIM AL THANI,
38 directorgeneral,AlJazeera Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Media
Taking over the reins from Wadah Khanfar, Al Thani now runs Al Jazeera, the widely recognised Arab mouthpiece to the West. Heading 60 bureaus that reach 250 million households across 130 countries, the Qatari national is now determined to crack America with the buy out of cable channel Current TV.
new HAYAT SINDI, 39 researcher
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Science
Dr. Hayat Sindi is the first Saudi and Muslim woman in the Middle East to obtain a PhD in biotechnology. She invented MARS, a biotechnology machine, and also co-founded Diagnostics for All, a non-profit that develops disease diagnosis. In 2012, she was named one of Newsweek's "150 Women Who Shake the World".
40 Nobel Peace Prize winner Origin: Yemen Residence: Yemen Sector: Culture and society
Although Karman has dropped in ranking from last year, she still remains one of the Arab Spring's most recognisable faces, lauded with championing the Augean Stables of Yemini politics. The youngest
Nobel Peace Laureate to date, and the first Arab woman and Yemeni to do so, it's no wonder that Karman has been nicknamed the "Iron Woman".
new SABIH AL-MASRI, 41 chairman, Arab Bank
Origin: Jordan Residence: Jordan Sector: Finance
With the sudden and controversial departure of former chairman Abdel Hamid Shoman in August 2012, Al-Masri has a tough act to follow. As Shoman's family divests its stake in the bank it founded, and rumours are rife of other divestments, it is up to Al-Masri to steer the largest Jordanian lender forward.
DR. ABDALLA ALNAJJAR,
42 president,ArabScience&TechnologyFoundation Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Science
One of the rare Arab scientists based in the Middle East, Dr. Alnajjar continues to make the region proud. By initiating measures like using scientific innovation to achieve economic development, raising funds for human capital, forging tie-ups with international companies and opening offices in countries that need sustainable sustenance, he is truly a scientist with a heart.
new BADER AL-KHARAFI, 43 vicepresident,MAKharafi
Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Industry As a member of one of the richest families
in the world - 29th according to Forbes - the billionaire leads the MAK Group. Regarded as a pillar of the Kuwaiti economy, the conglomerate has interests in banking,
manufacturing, construction and food, as well as shareholdings in key businesses including the National Bank of Kuwait and telecom company Zain.
44 KHALAF AL HABTOOR, chairman, Al Habtoor
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Real Estate
Over the last year, the 63-year-old chairman has done more than run his founding company Al Habtoor, the Dubai-based conglomerate valued at more than $6 billion. He's also set up a trust scheme for a suitable successor, launched an autobiography, donated heaters to Syria and postponed his company's $1.6 billion IPO.
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45 MOHAMMED AL AMOUDI, chairman, Midroc
Origin: Ethiopia/Saudi Arabia Residence: Ethiopia Sector: Energy
According to Forbes Al Amoudi is "the richest black person in the world". Having made a fortune executing lucrative construction contracts for the Saudi royal family, Al Amoudi is now Ethiopia's biggest investor, having invested $3.4 billion into the country recently. He also owns oil refineries and property in Sweden and Morocco.
46 SULTAN NASSER AL SUWAIDI, governor, UAE central bank
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Finance
After his reappointment as governor in 2012, Al Suwaidi shone in his twenty-first year in office. He was the harbinger of good news, backing growth in both the UAE economy and its banking system. Dismissing Moody's contrary concerns on asset quality and low provisioning, the governor brought to the fore tough regulations like limiting the amount loaned to government-related firms.
47 KHADEM AL QUBAISI, chairman, Aabar Investments & Arabtec Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Finance
As chairman of billion-dollar investment company Aabar, Qubaisi oversaw the acquisition of a 53 per cent controlling stake in Arabtec, the UAE's largest construction firm in May 2012. Under his leadership, Arabtec has already won major deals including a Dhs2.4 billion contract to build Abu Dhabi's Louvre museum.
48 KHALID AL MUDAIFER, CEO, Maaden
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Industry As head of the region's largest mining firm, Mudaifer is now entering the automotive market with a successful joint venture with Alcoa. In 2012 he launched a SAR9 billion Shariah-compliant credit facility, the largest
in the Kingdom. With multi-billion dollar projects in the pipeline for 2013, it looks like there will be no slowing down for this man.
49 OMAR K ALGHANIM, CEO, Alghanim Industries
Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Industry
This Harvard-educated CEO joined the management ranks of Alghanim Industries - one of the largest privately owned companies in the Gulf region with over 30 businesses in 40 countries - in 2002. He is the founding shareholder of Perella Weinberg Partners and serves as a board member of several firms. For 2013 he has his eyes set firmly on expansion into the East.
governor and chairman, SAGIA Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Finance
Abdullatif al-Othman was appointed governor of Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (Sagia) in May 2012 and has also been made chairman of the Economic Cities Authority. In his new role, he is expected to review the plans for the four cities in Rabigh, Jaizan, Madinah and Hail. Al-Othman's undisputedly biggest challenge will be supporting the country's diversification away from oil.
51 SHEIKHA HANADI BINT NASSER BIN KHALID AL THANI, businesswoman Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Finance
Sheikha Hanadi is integral to Qatari banking and real estate. She founded Amwal in 1998, the first company to receive a licence for investment banking in Qatar. A special advisor to Standard Chartered Bank, she is also CEO of the Al Waab City Real Estate development project and deputy CEO of Nasser Bin Khaled Al Thani & Sons Group.
52 MOHAMMED JAMEEL, president, Abdul Latif Jameel Group Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Retail
When he's not selling Toyotas and Lexus from the world's largest dealership - the Abdul Latif Jameel Group - Jameel immerses himself in philanthropic services through ALJ Community Initiatives that focuses on youth Training, employment and poverty alleviation, having created 50,000 new jobs in 2011 alone.
53 DR. ABDULRAHMAN AL ZAMIL, chairman, Al Zamil Holding company Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Industry
Al Zamil is a heavyweight of business and government in Saudi Arabia, and currently serves as the chairman of numerous companies including the Zamil Industrial Investment Company, Zamil Holding Company, Saudi Export Development Center, the National Power Company and the Emirates Industrial City Company.
54 JAWAD AHMED BUKHAMSEEN, founder and chairman, Bukhamseen Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Diversified
Jawad Ahmed founded the Jawad Bukhamseen Commercial Corporation in 1957, building what is now one of Kuwait's largest financial and industrial conglomerates, the Bukhamseen Group.
Assets include holdings in Kuwait International Bank and First Gulf Bank. The group is also active in real estate, retail, hospitality, education and media.
55 BADER M. AL SA'AD, MD, Kuwait Investment Authority Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Finance
Kuwait's sovereign wealth fund, the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) manages around $296 billion of assets and as its head, Al Sa'ad presides over all its investments, including holdings in Daimler AG, BP, Bank Of America/ Merrill Lynch and Arab Insurance. Al Sa'ad was formerly MD of one of Kuwait's largest investment companies, Markaz.
56 ISSAM ALZAHID, chairman, Alzahid group of companies Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Industry
Issam Alzahid is chairman of the Alzahid Group of Companies, a Saudi Arabian conglomerate with a history of infrastructure building stretching back to the 1950s and is behind much of the basic transport infrastructure upon which the Kingdom still relies. With $11 billion to his name, Alzahid coordinates a group that employs over 31,000 employees, with additional interests in mining, oil and gas, information technology, foodstuffs, retail and many other sectors.
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57 DR. NASSER MARAFIH, CEO, Qtel
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Telecom Under Marafih's guidance, Qatar Telecom (Qtel) is continuing its rapid expansion and recently raised its stake in Tunisian operator Tunisiana to 90 per cent. The firm also successfully issued a $1 billion 10-year bond in December 2012. A GSMA board member, Marafih has overseen Qtel's growth from a single-country operator to having a presence in 17 countries.
new DR. KHALED BIN ABDULAZIZ AL GHONEIM, 58 CEO,SaudiTelecomCompany
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Telecom
Appointed as the group CEO of Saudi Telecom Company in June 2012, Al Ghoneim takes charge of the Kingdom's largest telecoms company, which has over 160 million subscribers in 11 countries across the world.
Al Ghoneim, who was previously a consultant for Saudi's defence and aviation ministries, also serves on the boards of many local companies.
HH PRINCESS AMEERAH AL-TAWEEL,
59 vice-chairperson,AlwaleedbinTalalFoundation Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Culture and society
Princess Ameerah has gained global recognition in recent years as a prominent spokesperson for reforms in Saudi Arabia. The vice-chairperson of the Alwaleed bin Talal Foundation, she is the wife of Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal. The foundation supports programmes for poverty alleviation, disaster relief, women's empowerment and interfaith dialogue across the world.
new MUNIB AL MASRI, 60 chairman, Palestinian Development and
Investment Company (PADICO) Origin: Palestine Residence: Palestine Sector: Industry
Known as the 'Palestinian Rothschild', powerful billionaire Al Masri founded EDGO, an oil and gas contracting company in Amman. He is now a director of the Palestinian Development and Investment Company (PADICO), one of the biggest listed companies on the Palestine Exchange, and is also deputy chairman of the Palestine Investment Fund.
new MOHAMMED BIN ALI AL HEDFA, 61 group CEO, Qatari Diar
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Real estate Qatari Diar is the property arm of Qatar's sovereign wealth fund. The property firm, whose worldwide portfolio includes 49 projects valued at over $39 billion, has been on a buying spree in Europe, most recently
buying the athletes' village in London's Olympic park for $906 million along with UK developer Delancey Estates.
62 ZUHAIR MURAD, fashion designer
Origin: Lebanon Residence: Lebanon Sector: Culture and society A renowned name in the world of fashion, Zuhair Murad's creation was recently paraded by Kristen Stewart at the latest Twilight saga movie première. The Lebanese designer has dressed numerous celebrities and his collection is available through 80 multi-brand outlets and stores
across the world. In addition to haute couture, Murad's line includes menswear and accessories.
63 FADI GHANDOUR, founder and CEO, Aramex
Origin: Jordan Residence: UAE Sector: Transport
The founder and CEO of Dubai-based logistics giant Aramex, Ghandour has spearheaded the company's rapid international growth. Aramex, a listed company, was the first from the Arab region to list on the NASDAQ stock exchange, and currently trades on the Dubai Financial Market. Ghandour is also a founding partner of maktoob.com and a board member of Abraaj Capital.
64 ZAHA HADID, director, Zaha Hadid Architects
Origin: Iraq Residence: UK Sector: Real Estate
The Iraqi-born architect, who recently won the bid to build the Japan National Stadium (80,000-seats), has to her credit the London 2012 Olympic Aquatics Centre and opera houses in Dubai and Guangzhou. Known for her contemporary design, she holds the honour of being the first woman to win the Pritzker Prize for architecture in 2004.
65 ABDULRAHMAN AL FADLEY, CEO, Almarai
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Retail
Saudi-based Almarai is the Gulf's biggest integrated dairy firm by market value and Al Fadley is leading the company on its drive to expand beyond the region. In May 2012, Almarai's board approved a $4.2 billion five-year investment plan to improve product innovation. The company's SAR1 billion Sukuk, issued in March, was 4.7 times oversubscribed.
66 MARWAN MARZOUK BOODAI, CEO & MD, Boodai Group
Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Industry
The renowned Kuwaiti businessman has guided Jazeera Airways to register net profits in eight of the last nine quarters. The Middle East's first private sector airline, Jazeera recently raised its capital by 74 per cent to KD42 million. Marwan Boodai also oversees the Boodai Group, a supplier of heavy construction machinery and industrial tools across the GCC.
67 AMR DIAB, singer
Origin: Egypt Residence: Egypt Sector: Culture and society
Considered by many fans as a "living legend," the Egyptian singer reportedly pocketed a cool $170,000 for performing on New Years' Eve 2012 in Dubai. Diab, who gained popularity for creating a blend of Western and Egyptian rhythms, has his own radio station - Diab FM, and has also acted in a few movies.
new SULTAN AHMED BIN SULAYEM, 68 chairman,DPWorld
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Industry Under his tutelage the world's third biggest ports firm operates 60 terminals across six continents. In addition, the company currently has 10 new developments and major expansions underway in nine countries. Its
landmark London Gateway project in the UK will also start operations in Q4 of 2013.
TARIQ ABDULLAH AL QAHTANI,
69 chairman,AbdelHadiAbdullahAlQahtaniGroup of Companies
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Industry
Tariq Abdullah sits at the helm of one of the oldest, most respected and well-diversified corporate groups in Saudi Arabia. Founded in the 1940s as a wholesale supplier of food and materials, the business has diversified into numerous areas including oil and gas. The group also has offices in the US, Europe and other international locations.
70 YOUSEF AL-SHELASH, chairman, Dar Al-Arkan
Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Real Estate
A pioneer of Saudi Arabia's property industry, Al-Shelash is the chairman of Dar Al-Arkan Real Estate Development Company, the largest developer in the Kingdom. He is currently leading the firm's plans to buy assets in Asia. A lawyer by profession, Al-Shelash also serves as the chairman and non-executive director of Bahrain based Bank AlKhair.
71 NEMIR KIRDAR, executive chairman and CEO, Investcorp Origin: Iraq Residence: UK Sector: Finance
Kirdar oversees the worldwide operations of the Bahraini investment firm, which has around $11.5 billion of assets under management. Investcorp also has bases in London and New York and recently bought
property worth $120 million in the US. Kirdar is also a writer and has penned a book on Iraq.
72 MAJID AL FUTTAIM, president, MAF
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Diversified The UAE-based billionaire serves as the
head of the Majid Al Futtaim Group (MAF), a prominent shopping malls and retail developer. Forbes estimated his net worth to be $1.1 billion in 2012. The
company, expanding rapidly across the region, successfully issued a $400 million Sukuk and raised $500 million from a conventional bond in 2012.
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73 DR. SULTAN AL JABER, CEO and MD, Masdar
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Energy The winner of the prestigious UN Champions
of the Earth award in 2012, Al Jaber is at the forefront of Abu Dhabi's renewable energy drive. He spearheaded the launch and establishment of Masdar in 2006, and also
serves as the Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and UAE's Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change.
74 ALA'A ERAIQAT, CEO, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Finance
The recipient of Gulf Business' CEO of the Year-Banking award in 2012, Ala'a Eraiqat has been instrumental in steering ADCB out of the global economic crisis. ADCB is now the UAE's third largest bank and has assets
worth around Dhs182 billion. A seasoned banker, Eraiqat previously held senior positions in Citibank and Standard Chartered Bank.
75 OMAR HAMAD ALMANA, chairman, Almana Group
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Industry
The veteran Qatari businessman established the Almana Group in 1960, and has overseen the group diversify into a massive conglomerate with assets worth QAR4.66 billion as of December 2011. Almana is also a founding member of the Commercial Bank of Qatar, Al Ahli Bank, and the Qatar General Insurance & Reinsurance.
76 DR. SAMIA AL AMOUDI, activist (Breast cancer awareness) Origin: KSA Residence: KSA Sector: Science
A breast cancer survivor, Al Amoudi became the first GCC woman to sit on the board of the Union for International Cancer Control in 2012. A consultant obstetrician gynecologist, she is the founder/CEO of the Sheikh
Mohammed H. Al-Amoudi Center of Excellence in Breast Cancer and chairwoman of Women's Health Empowerment at King Abdulaziz University.
77 ADEL ALI, group CEO, Air Arabia
Origin: Bahrain Residence: UAE Sector: Transport
Air Arabia, the MENA region's first and largest low cost carrier, ended 2012 by taking delivery of its 14th Airbus A320 aircraft. The rapidly expanding airline, led by Adel Ali, now operates services to 82 destinations around
the globe. The publicly listed company posted a 75 per cent increase in net profit for the first nine months of 2012.
78 governor,ArabMonetaryFund Origin: Palestine Residence: Greece Sector: Finance
In 1952, with cousin Hasib Sabbagh, Said Khoury founded Consolidated Contractors International Company (CCC), one of the first Arab construction companies. It now sees sales of $4 billion a year. In political circles he is best known for his work championing the Palestinian cause, as he chairs the Palestinian Businessmen's Association and governs the Arab Monetary Fund.
new EISA MOHAMMAD AL SUWAIDI, 79 chairman,Etisalat
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Telecom
After almost 12 years as chairman of the UAE's first and largest telecom operator, Mohammed Omran stepped down in June last year. Eisa Mohammad Al Suwaidi took on the role alongside six new directors following a decree by President HH Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
SIR MAGDI YACOUB,
80 hearttransplantpioneer Origin: Egypt Residence: UK Sector: Science
A heart transplant pioneer, Yacoub set-up the largest heart and lung transplant progamme to date with over 2,500 operations performed. Having retired in 2001, he is now a professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the National
Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London and is also behind the Qatar Cardiovascular Research Centre.
new ALI FERZAT, 81 cartoonist
Origin: Syria Residence: Undisclosed Sector: Media
Named one of Time magazine's Most Influential People in 2012, the 61-year-old cartoonist stands as an icon of the Syrian revolutionary movement. His cynical caricatures of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad even pushed government supporters to break Farzat's hands in August 2011. Undaunted, the cartoonist, who was forced to flee Syria, continues to draw.
82 SULTAN AL QASSEMI, current affairs commentator
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Media
Sultan al-Qassemi is a well-known name in the UAE's media circles with over 176,000 followers on Twitter. A popular commentator on political and economic issues in the region, he continues to tweet updates on
Arab uprisings and writes regular blogs and opinion pieces online. He is also the founder and chairman of Barjeel Securities, a financial products company.
83 MISHAL KANOO, deputy chairman, Kanoo Group
Origin: Bahrain Residence: UAE Sector: Industry Mishal Kanoo has held his position at the Kanoo Group since 1997 and is one of the most outspoken and divisive voices in Middle Eastern affairs. He sits on the boards of over 15 companies ranging in sizes from $10 million to over $1 billion.
new SHEIKHA AL BAHAR, 84 CEO,NationalBankofKuwait
Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Finance As well as being the CEO of NBK, Sheikha Al Bahar is also a board member of various divisions within the bank and has been involved in all of the Kuwait Investment Authority's (KIA) privatisation deals since
1994. A well sought out public speaker, Al Bahar is also the chairperson of NBK Lebanon and is a board member of International Bank of Qatar (IBQ), National Bank of Kuwait (International) and more.
85 HUSSAIN IBRAHIM AL FARDAN, chairman,AlFardanGroup
Origin: Qatar Residence: Qatar Sector: Finance The Al Fardan Group is a diversified business that trades in jewellery, watches, automobiles, property development, money exchange and investments. Al Fardan's sphere of influence is multi-faceted: he is the chairman of property developer Union Development Corporation, the managing director of the Commercial Bank of Qatar, and is one of the founding directors of Investcorp.
86 HAMAD AL KA'ABI, nuclear secretary
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Energy
Al Ka'abi recently spoke at the IAEA Fukushima Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Safety in Japan where he said the UAE will place the utmost emphasis on safety following the Fukushima disaster. With the UAE set to become the first Arab country to produce nuclear power, Ka'abi is behind the transparent model being available for the world to scrutinise.
87 MAHA KHALID AL-GHUNAIM, chairperson and managing director, GIH Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Finance
A co-founder of GIH in 1998, Ghunaim helped it become the first Kuwaiti firm to list on the London Stock Exchange. After signing a deal with Kuwait Finance House to restructure KD49.5 million dinars it owes in debts, KFH lowered its shareholding in GIH by 3.32 per cent to 21.84 per cent.
new SAMIRA IBRAHIM, 88 plaintiff
Origin: Egypt Residence: Egypt Sector: Culture and society
After Egyptian soldiers subjected her and other female protesters to forced "virginity tests," the marketing manager refused to stay silent. She sued the military and a civilian judge ruled the shocking practice illegal. However, her fight continues: in March last year, a military tribunal acquitted the doctor who allegedly performed the "virginity tests". Samira has sworn to pursue the case using international law and the case has gained considerable global coverage.
SAEED AL MAZROOEI,
89 CEO,Emal Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Industry
Overseeing an expansion to Emal that will see the company become the world's largest single-site aluminum smelter, Al Mazrooei is a powerful man in the world of metals. The company supplies over 280 customers in 36 countries, with a focus on serving the aerospace, electronics and construction industries. Having recently accepted a health and safety award from the Gulf Aluminium Council, Emal has begun the year on a good note.
90 AHMED FAHOUR, MD and CEO, Australia Post
Origin: Syria Residence: Australia Sector: Transport
The boss of the billion-dollar Melbourne- based courier and postal service, Australia Post, Fahour was dubbed a 'Grinch' in December, after he docked workers' Christmas bonuses, despite improved profit. The irm employs over 34,000 employees. In July 2009, he was appointed as interim CEO at Bahrain's Gulf Finance House. Previously he was the CEO of National Australia Bank and is also chairman of the Rip Curl Group.
91 FATIMA AL JABER, COO, Al Jaber Group
Origin: UAE Residence: UAE Sector: Diversified
UAE national Al Jaber is responsible for the day-to-day management of the Al Jaber Group, overseeing 50,000 staff and assets of $5 billion. She is considered an ambassador for women in the workplace and is the first Emirati woman to be elected to the board of directors at the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce.
new SHEIKHA MUNIRA QUBEYSI, 92 founder, Al Qubaysiat
Origin: Syria Residence: Syria Sector: Education
Al Qubaysiat, a group which offers Islamic education exclusively to females, is the largest women-only Islamic movement in the world. The group was banned in Syria until 2006 when the government finally approved and allowed it to teach religion. The foundation now directs over 80 schools in Damascus and reaches 75,000 students.
64 / FEBRUARY 2013 49-65 Top 100.indd 64
new F. MICHEL ABOUCHALACHE, 93 CEO,Quilvest
Origin: Lebanon Residence: France Sector: Finance
With $22 billion of assets under management, Abouchalache has a lot of power in his hands. Paris-based Quilvest Group is an investment firm specialising in direct funds investments, making equity investments between $10 million to $75 million with an enterprise value between $30 million to $500 million.
KHALED SAMAWI, founder, Ayyam Gallery 70 Origin: Syria Residence: Syria Sector: Culture and society 60
94 After a successful career in Switzerland, this ex-banker opened an art gallery in Damascus in 2006, which became a trailblazer in the 40 Arab world. With galleries in Damascus, Beirut, Cairo and Dubai, Ayyam Gallery is
20 regional auction house with auctions in Dubai and Beirut. In 10
promoting top Arab talent, and has also established the first 2013, Samawi will expand to London and Jeddah.
DR FAROUK AL BAZ, 95 scientist Origin: Egypt Residence: US Sector: Science
Al Baz participated in the Apollo Lunar Exploration programme, earning him NASA's Apollo Achievement Award and the more rare recognition of having his name uttered in space by an astronaut. He is a professor and
director of the Centre for Remote Sensing at Boston University and is the president of the Arab Society of Desert Research.
96 chairmanandCEO,FreshDelMonte Origin: Palestine Residence: US Sector: Retail
US-based Fresh Del Monte is one of the leading distributors of fresh-cut fruits and vegetables across the world. Palestinian- born Abu Ghazaleh, who has been heading the company since 1996, ensures that the retail giant continues to grow. The company, which has around 40,000 employees, reported nine-month sales of $2.64 billion in 2012.
DR. OMAR BIN ABDUL MUNIM AL ZAWAWI, businessman Origin: Oman Residence: Oman Sector: Politics
Omar Al Zawawi plays many roles. He is the special advisor for External Liaison to Sultan Qaboos Bin Said and the chairman of Omzest, one of the sultanate's largest diversified groups. Al Zawawi was also
the founding chairman of Muscat Finance, and under his leadership, Oman International Bank, part of Omzest, merged with HSBC last year.
MUHAMMAD AL ZUBAIR,
98 founder, Al Zubair Foundation Origin: Oman Residence: Oman Sector: Government
Rashad Bin Muhammad Al-Zubair founded the Zubair Foundation and serves as a deputy chairman and group president. Though he now devotes his time to philanthropic activities, he is also economic planning affairs advisor to the Sultan of Oman, chairman of Oman Arab Bank Saoc and director of the capital market authority - Muscat Securities Market's regulatory body.
DR. NAIF AL-MUTAWA,
99 creator,The99 Origin: Kuwait Residence: Kuwait Sector: Culture and society
As founder and CEO of Teshkeel Media Group, he created The 99, the first group of comic superheroes born of an Islamic archetype. The global TV and film smash- hit was commended by US President Barack Obama for capturing the imaginations of young people through the message of tolerance.
director Origin: Lebanon Residence: Lebanon Sector: Media
Dubbed the poster girl of Beirut, the writer, director and actress was named Middle East Filmmaker of the Year in 2007 for her debut film, Caramel, at Cannes. Now she's back, starring in her 2012 follow-up, Where
Do We Go Now which focuses on how the changing face of the region has been brought into sharp focus by the events of the Arab Spring.
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