Prince Alwaleed bin Talal
Billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal (62), who has been arrested as part of an anti-corruption probe in Saudi Arabia, is the founder of the conglomerate Kingdom Holding Company. He is one of the world’s richest men, estimated to be worth $19-billion. He is currently 50th on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. According to a 2013 Forbes profile,
Prince Alwaleed has a marble-filled, 420room palace in Riyadh, a private Boeing 747 equipped with a throne, and a 120acre resort on the edge of the Saudi capital with 5 homes, 5 artificial lakes and a mini-Grand Canyon.
Prince Alwaleed has ties with many business titans, from Bill Gates to Rupert Murdoch. He has pledged his entire wealth to charity and already has donated about $3.5-billion. He owns big chunks of companies across the USA, Europe and West Asia. He holds 5% stake each in Apple and Twitter, also has holdings in Lyft, Citigroup, 21st Century Fox, Motorola, eBay, Time Warner and Four seasons hotel chain.
His assets of over $9.6-billion include: Saudi Property ($4,100-million), Global Investment ($2,600-million), Rotana Group of Arabic channels ($980-million), Twitter ($612-million), Plane, Yacht and Jewellery ($509-million) and other assets ($342-million). Prince Alwaleed’s net worth has plummeted to $17.8-billion from $19-billion after the market value of the Kingdom Holding sank $1.3-billion after his arrest.
The crackdown on some of Saudi Arabia’s richest and most powerful persons has put $33-billion of personal wealth at risk as it implicates 3 of the kingdom’s richest people.
Between 1991 and 1995, Prince Alwaleed helped Donald Trump’s struggling business, buying his yacht in 1991 for $20-million and investing in the Plaza Hotel. In 2016, he had a Twitter spat with Trump.
The prince tweeted Trump should quit the presidential race as he was a “disgrace to all America”, telling him that “you will never win”. Trump’s response: “Dopey Prince @ Alwaleed _ Talal wants to control our US politicians with daddy’s money. Can’t do it when I get elected.”
Prince Alwaleed, often pictured on his 85.65-metre superyacht in the Mediterranean, is among the most outspoken Saudi royals and a longtime advocate for women’s rights.