Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair
He is the CEO of Mashreq Group, the speaker of the Federal National Council, and the chairman of Masafi; and that is just the start of the billionaire’s portfolio.
February 15, 2009 3:01 by Aarti Nagraj
The CEO of the Mashreq Group, his bank recently announced net profits of AED1.64 billion for 2008, down by 13.6 percent compared to the previous year. The bank reported an operating income of almost AED4 billion for the year, a 3.5 per cent increase over 2007; however, earlier this month, the company laid off 4 percent of its workforce, around 175 people, because of “reduced market activity.”
Mashreq bank was founded by Abdullah Al Ghurair, its chairman and Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair’s father. An industrial engineer, Al Ghurair (junior) joined the bank in 1977, and helped open branches in New York, London, Bahrain, India and Pakistan. He was appointed executive director in 1989 and became CEO the following year.
Apart from Mashreq, Al Ghurair has a long list of other positions; he was elected the speaker of the UAE’s Federal National Council in 2007, is president of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Group, serves as vice-chairman and board member of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), and sits on the Board of Emirates Foundation and Dubai Economic Council. Al Ghurair is also chairman of Masafi, RAK petroleum and the Endowment Fund, and is a member of the Governing Council of the UAE Higher Colleges of Technology and member of the Constitutive Council for GCC Leaders.