Top 100 Powerful Arabs 2015

Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s first female prime minister, famously said that if you have to tell people that you are powerful, you probably aren’t. It was a delightfully correct quip from a political leader once referred to as the “Iron lady” by her country’s cold war adversaries. Power is an invisible energy, measured not by the […]

Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s first female prime minister, famously said that if you have to tell people that you are powerful, you probably aren’t. It was a delightfully correct quip from a political leader once referred to as the “Iron lady” by her country’s cold war adversaries.

Power is an invisible energy, measured not by the person, but his or her actions. There is no one specific way to demonstrate power as so ably shown by each and every individual on the fourth annual Gulf Business Top 100 ranking of the world’s most powerful Arabs.

Each of these personalities has shaped the Arab World in their own unique way, some using the influence of their vast wealth and others just the strength and courage of their convictions.
They have, to put it simply, made things happen because they could. They chose not to take a backseat when it mattered and for that, they should be applauded.


We assembled a team of experts from within Motivate’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 2014 and judged each individual case on power merit.

We have included business people of Arab descent from all over the world. We weighted our points system across the following spheres of influence:


In general, we have excluded politicians and royalty, unless contenders have an unassailably strong leaning towards corporate activity.

The Gulf Business Arab Power 100 is intended to be an inspirational representation of some of the Arab world’s greatest achievers and future shapers.

1HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlsaudChairmanKSAKingdom HoldingFinance
2HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al MaktoumChairmanUAEEmirates /Emirates NBDTransport
3Ali Bin Ibrahim Al NaimiPetroleum And Mineral Resources MinisterKSAEnergy
4Carlos SlimHonorary ChairmanLebanonAmerica MovilTelecom
5Khalid Al FalihCEOKSAAramcoEnergy
6Mohamed Al MadyVice Chairman And CEOKSASabicIndustry
7Suhail Al MazrouiEnergy MinisterUAEEnergy
8Major Mariam Al MansouriFemale Fighter PilotUAEMilitary
10Carlos GhosnChairman And CEOLebanonRenault/NissanIndustry
11Hassan Abdullah Al ThawadiSecretary GeneralQatarQatar 2022 Supreme CommitteeCulture And Society
12Mohamed Bin Issa Al JaberChairman And CEOKSAMBI InternationalReal Estate
13Bakr BinladinChairmanKSABinladin GroupReal Estate
14Khadem Al QubaisiChairmanUAEInternational Petroleum Investment Company, Aabar Investments & ArabtecFinance
15Khaldoon Khalifa Al MubarakCEO And Managing DirectorUAEMubada La Development CompanyFinance
16Lubna OlayanCEOKSAOlayan Financing CompanyFinance
17Mansour Saleh Al-MaimanChairmanKSANational Commercial BankFinance
18Mohamed Ebrahim Al ShaibaniCEOUAEInvestment Corporation Of DubaiFinance
19Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohamed Bin Saud Al ThaniCEOQatarQatar Investment AuthorityFinance
20HE Abdul Aziz Al GhurairCEOUAEMashreqFinance
21Akbar Al BakerCEOQatarQatar AirwaysTransport
22Loujain Al HathloulDriving activistKSACulture And Society
23Ali Shareef Al EmadiMinister Of Finance, ChairmanQatarQNBFinance
24HE Reem Al HashimyMinister of State and Managing Director, Dubai World Expo 2020UAEDiversified
25Sheikh Sulaiman Bin Abdulaziz Al-RajhiChairmanKSAAl Rajhi BankFinance
26Mohammed Bin Abdulmalik Al SheikhChairmanKSACapital Market AuthorityFinance
27Mohammed Saleh Al SadaQatarMinister of Energy and IndustryEnergy
28Mohammed AlshayaChairmanKuwaitMH AlshayaRetail
29Sheikha Mayassa Bint Al ThaniChairwomanQatarQatar Museums AuthorityCulture And Society
30Abdulla Nasser Al SuwaidiDirector GeneralUAEADNOCEnergy
31Somayya JabartiEditor-in-ChiefKSASaudi GazetteMedia
32Sheikh Khalid Bin Khalifa Al ThaniCEOQatarQatargasEnergy
33Mahmood Hashim Al KoohejiCEOBahrainMumtalakatFinance
34HH Sheikha Moza Bint NasserChairwomanQatarQatar FoundationCulture And Society
35Abdalla Salem El-BadriSecretary GeneralLibyaOPECEnergy
36Elie SaabFashion DesignerLebanonCulture and Society
37Sheikh Waleed Bin Ibrahim Al IbrahimGroup chairmanKSAMBC GroupMedia
38Khalaf Al HabtoorChairmanUAEAl Habtoor GroupReal Estate
39Obadah Al-KaddriDirectorSyriaAl WatanMedia
40Dr Fahad Al-MubarakGovernorKSASAMAFinance
41Dr Nasser MarafihCEOQatarOoredooTelecoms
42Sheikh Saleh KamelChairmanKSADallah AlbarakaDiversified
43Abdulaziz Bin Abdullah Al SugairChairmanKSASaudi Telecom CompanyTelecoms
44Abdulla J KalbanCEO and MDUAEEmirates Global AluminiumIndustry
45Suad Al HumaidiInvestorKuwaitFinance
46Nasser Al-KhelaifiChairman, CEO, PresidentQatarbeIN MediaGroup, Paris Saint-Germain F.C, Qatar Sports InvestmentSport
47Bader Al-KharafiVice President,KuwaitMA KharafiIndustry
48Dr. Sultan Al JaberMinister of state , CEO and MDUAEMasdarEnergy
49Mubarak Rashid Al MansouriGovernor, CEOUAEUAE Central Bank and Emirates Investment AuthorityFinance
50Nassef SawirisDirector and CEOEgyptOrascom Construction IndustriesReal Estate
51Adel S Al-GhamdiCEOKSATadawulFinance
52Majid Al FuttaimPresidentUAEMAFDiversified
53Nayla HayekChairwoman, CEOLebanonSwatch Group, Harry WinstonRetail
54Zaha HadidDirectorIraqZaha Hadid ArchitectsReal Estate
55Mohammed Al AmoudiChairmanEthiopia/KSAMidrocEnergy
56Sheikh Ahmad Al-GhamdiSaudi ClericKSACulture and Society
57Khalid Al MudaiferCEOKSAMa’adenIndustry
58Omar K AlghanimCEOKuwaitAlghanim IndustriesIndustry
59Sultan Ahmed Bin SulayemChairmanUAEDP WorldIndustry
60Youssef Al ShelashChairmanKSADar Al-ArkanReal Estate
61Mohammed JameelChairman and PresidentKSAAbdul Latif Jameel GroupRetail
62Eisa Mohamed Al SuwaidiChairmanUAEEtisalatTelecoms
63Dr. Abdul Rahman Al ZamilChairmanKSAAl Zamil Holding CompanyIndustry
64Adel AliGroup CEOBahrainAir ArabiaTransport
65Jawad Ahmed BukhamseenFounder and ChairmanUAEBukhamseenDiversified
66Ziad Bin Mohammed Al ShihaCEOKSASaudi ElectricityEnergy
67Mohammad Abu-GhazalehChairman and CEOPalestineFresh Del MonteRetail
68Bader M. Al Sa’adMDKuwaitKuwait Investment AuthorityFinance
69Mohammed Bin Ali Al HedfaGroup CEOQatarQatari DiarReal Estate
70Issam AlzahidChairmanKSAAlzahid group of companiesIndustry
71Adel AujanChairmanKSAAujan IndustriesRetail
72Sheikha Hanadi Bint Nasser Bin Khalid Al ThaniFounder and ChairwomanQatarAmwalFinance
73Marwan Marzouk BoodaiCEO, MD, ChairmanKuwaitBoodai Group, Jazeera AirwaysIndustry
74Dr. Amina Al RustamaniGroup CEOUAETECOM InvestmentsReal Estate
75Tariq Abdullah Al QahtaniChairmanKSAAbdel Hadi Abdullah Al Qahtani Group Of CompaniesDiversified
76Zuhair MuradFashion DesignerLebanonCulture and Society
77Omar Hamad AlmanaChairman,QatarAlmana GroupIndustry
78Baseem YousefCardiac SurgeonEgyptSatirist And Columnist
79Sheikha Al BaharDeputy Group CEOKuwaitNational Bank of KuwaitFinance
80He Essa KazimChairman, DFM, CEO, Governor,UAEBorse Dubai, DIFCFinance
81Hussain Ibrahim Al FardanChairmanQatarAl Fardan GroupDiversified
82Haifa Al-MansourFilm DirectorKSAMedia
83Mishal KanooDeputy ChairmanBahrainKanoo GroupIndustry
84Mustafa AghaJournalistSyriaMedia
85Hussain SajwaniChairman And FounderUAEDamac PropertiesReal Estate
86Fatima Al JaberCOOUAEAl Jaber GroupDiversified
87Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saud Al ThaniGovernorQatarQatar Central BankFinance
88Ahmed Hassan ZewailScientistEgyptScience
89Shehab GargashChairman And FounderUAEDaman InvestmentsFinance
90Hazem ShareefWinnerSyriaArab IdolCulture And Society
91Noura Al KaabiCEOUAETwofour54Media
92Dr. Omar Bin Abdul Munim Al ZawawiBusinessmanOmanDiversified
93Maha Khalid Al-GhunaimVice Chairman And Group CeoKuwaitGIHFinance
94Munib Al MasriChairmanPalestinePalestinian Development And Investment CompanyIndustry
95Elias ZerhouniPresident, Global R&DAlgeriaSanofi PharmaceuticalsScience
96Ali Rashid LootahChairmanUAENakheelReal Estate
97Salah TahlakDirectorUAEDubai Duty Free Tennis ChampionshipsSport
98Taoufik MakhloufiAthleteAlgeriaSport
99Karl SharroSatiristLebanonCommentator And ArchitectCulture And Society
100Muhammed Al ZubairFounderOmanAl Zubair FoundationCulture & Society