Mohamed Al-Fayed’s net worth was estimated at around $2 billion. He was the 1,493rd richest person in the world. Mohamed was an Egyptian businessman whose residence and chief business interests were in the United Kingdom from the mid-1960s. His business interests included ownership of the Hôtel Ritz Paris, Harrods department store and Fulham Football Club, both in London.
Mohamed Al-Fayed Biography
Born to an Egyptian primary school teacher from Asyut, the exact year of Mohamed Al-Fayed’s birth has been a subject of dispute. His official website, alfayed.com, once claimed he was born in 1933, but official records from the Department of Trade found his birth year to be 1929. The website finally adjusted his birth year to “1929” in 2011, resolving this long-standing debate. This early divergence in facts set the stage for a life filled with twists and turns.
Family played a significant role in Al-Fayed’s life, as his brothers Ali and Salah became his business colleagues. Together, they would embark on numerous ventures that would eventually change the landscape of global commerce.
Al-Fayed’s early marital life was also marked by notable connections. From 1954 to 1956, he was married to Samira Khashoggi, a period during which he collaborated closely with his brother-in-law, Adnan Khashoggi, a prominent Saudi Arabian arms dealer and businessman. Adnan Khashoggi’s name is synonymous with intrigue, given his connection to the Jamal Khashoggi affair, adding yet another layer of complexity to Al-Fayed’s life story.
Sometime in the early 1970s, Mohamed Al-Fayed decided to adopt the name “Al-Fayed” rather than just “Fayed.” His brothers, Ali and Salah, followed suit during their acquisition of the House of Fraser in the 1980s, although they later reverted to their original name. Speculations arose that the addition of “Al-” to their names aimed to imply aristocratic origins, akin to “de” in French or “von” in German. However, it’s worth noting that “Al-” doesn’t carry the same social connotations in Arabic. Regardless, this name change became one of the factors that led Private Eye magazine to nickname Mohamed Al-Fayed the “Phoney Pharaoh.”
The Al-Fayed brothers initially founded a shipping company in Egypt but eventually moved its headquarters to Genoa, Italy, with offices in London. This move marked the beginning of their global endeavours and international influence.
In 1964, Mohamed Al-Fayed formed a close relationship with François Duvalier, the Haitian leader known as ‘Papa Doc.’ Their collaboration centred around the ambitious plan to build a Fayed-Duvalier oil refinery in Haiti. Al-Fayed’s involvement with figures like geologist George de Mohrenschildt showcased his diverse interests, but his Haitian venture was short-lived when a supposed sample of “crude oil” turned out to be low-grade molasses.
Subsequently, Mohamed Al-Fayed relocated to England, where he settled in central London. It was here that he met Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai, who entrusted him with a pivotal role in the transformation of Dubai. In 1968, he established IMS (International Marine Services) and brought in British companies such as the Costain Group, of which he became a director and 30% shareholder. His influence extended to Bernard Sunley & Sons and Taylor Woodrow, all of whom played essential roles in Dubai’s development. Moreover, Al-Fayed became a financial adviser to Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien III of Brunei in 1966, further highlighting his global reach.
In 1975, he briefly joined the board of Lonrho, a mining conglomerate, but left due to a disagreement, adding another layer of intrigue to his ever-evolving career.
One of the most iconic chapters in Mohamed Al-Fayed’s life was his acquisition of The Ritz Hotel in Paris in 1979, a historic landmark that he purchased for a staggering $30 million. This move underlined his presence in the luxury hospitality industry.
Mohamed Al-Fayed Passes Away At Age 94
Tragically, Mohamed Al-Fayed passed away in London on August 30, 2023, at the age of 94, marking the end of an era filled with remarkable achievements and controversies. He was laid to rest on September 1st after Friday prayers at London Central Mosque, surrounded by his family.
Mohamed Al-Fayed net worth: How much is he worth?
Al-Fayed’s net worth was estimated at around $2 billion. He was the 1,493rd richest person in the world. His business interests included ownership of the Hôtel Ritz Paris, Harrods department store and Fulham Football Club, both in London.