HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, Chairman of Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) and Chairman of Alwaleed Philanthropies (AP) met Mr. Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft and Co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation at the George V, Paris.
During the meeting Prince Alwaleed and Mr. Gates discussed the latest economic developments in addition to topics related to KHC’s international investments including its stake of 47.5% in the Four Seasons which is co-owned by Bill Gates’ Cascade with a 47.5% stake, which the remaining 5% is owned by Mr. Isadore Sharp. Also, the two discussed future potential collaboration.
In response to Prince Alwaleed’s recent announcement to pledge his wealth ($32 billion) to philanthropy over the coming years, Mr. Bill Gates commented: “Prince Alwaleed’s generous commitment promises to significantly extend the great work that his foundation is already doing. His gift is an inspiration to all of us working in philanthropy around the world.”
In 2013, Alwaleed Philanthropies had signed a Memorandum of Collaboration (MOC) in a unique partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to bolster the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. Alwaleed Philanthropies pledged $30 Million to that effort.
In May 2015, Prince Alwaleed attended the 19th Microsoft CEO Summit held at the Microsoft Conference Center in Redmond Campus in Washington, Seattle. The Prince’s visit was in response to an invitation from Mr. Bill Gates. The Summit was exclusive to 100 CEOs most influential in the world. The Microsoft CEO Summit was established in 1997 in response to growing interest in the convergence of technology and business issues among corporate CEOs. Attendees had an opportunity to hear leading industry experts analyze economic trends and technology issues. The event was private, provided a forum in which CEOs from major companies and prominent business people discussed business challenges and shared insights and experiences with their peers from around the world.
In 2013, Prince Alwaleed met with Mr. Bill Gates at The Savoy Hotel, during His Highness visit to London, UK. In 2012, Prince Alwaleed held a private meeting with Mr. Gates, during His Highness visit to Abu Dhabi. Furthermore, the two attended the inauguration of the 3rd Abu Dhabi Media Summit. In the same year, Prince Alwaleed received Mr. Gates, at Kingdom Resort in Riyadh.
HRH has significant investments in the US in the financial sector via Citigroup, in the media and entertainment sector through 21st Fox Century and in the hotel sector through the Fairmont New York Plaza one of New York’s most distinctive landmarks, Four Seasons hotel via the management of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts in which KHC hold a 47.5% interest, and in the Social Media and Technology sector via Twitter.
His Highness first invested in Citigroup in 1991, and is the largest individual shareholder in the company. In 2008, Prince Alwaleed participated in the private offering of convertible preferred securities of Citigroup. The new direct investment was made alongside an exclusive group of leading international investors. The Prince converted the preferred shares in 2009 into common shares (voting shares). Prince Alwaleed has 7% (voting shares) through KHC in 21st Fox Century and KHC that is 95% owned by Prince Alwaleed, is the second largest shareholder in 21st Fox Century after the Murdoch family. Moreover, 21st Fox Century owns 19% stake in Rotana that is privately owned by Prince Alwaleed. The New York Plaza that is partially owned by HRH through KHC underwent a $400 million renovation and reopened a few years ago. The hotel is managed by Fairmont Raffles Hotels International (FRHI) in which KHC holds a substantial interest.
Founded in 1980, KHC is a publicly traded company which was listed on Tadawul (the Saudi Stock Exchange) in 2007. KHC is one of the world’s most successful and diversified business organizations, highly respected in the field of investments and recognized as an elite player in the Arabian Gulf region, and internationally. The Company is recognized as one of the largest foreign investors in the United States. KHC’s portfolio has its major interests in investment categories ranging from luxury hotels management hotel companies (Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Fairmont Raffles Holding Intl and Mövenpick Hotels, Resorts AG and Swissotel) and real estate (Kingdom Tower and project in Jeddah and Kingdom Riyadh project) to hotel real estate investments such as (The Plaza, New York, Savoy Hotel, London and Four Seasons, George V Hotel, Paris and other hotels). KHC also has investments in Petrochemical (Tasnee) Media and Publishing (News Corporation and Saudi Research and Marketing Group), as well as in Entertainment (Euro Disney S.C.A). In addition, Finance and Investment services (Citigroup), Social Media and Technology (Twitter and Jingdong). Moreover, the Company has investments in Education (Kingdom Schools), Health Care (Medical Services Projects Company), Aviation (NAS Saudi Arabia) and Agriculture (Kingdom Agricultural Development Company - KADCO Egypt).