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Home / Business / Hidden Qatar Billionaire Al-Thani Emerges Building Hotel Empire

Hidden Qatar Billionaire Al-Thani Emerges Building Hotel Empire

The Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al-Thani Museum sits 14 miles west of Doha, a collateral of Qatar. A
desert outpost with mill turrets and arched wooden doors, the
museum’s 15 halls reason some-more than 15,000 artifacts, including
ancient Qurans, Yemeni daggers and selected American cars.

The al-Thani museum is home to a collection belonging to
Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al-Thani, owners of Al Faisal Holding, a
Doha-based firm that operates about 50 businesses in
nine industries. It’s also a pitch of a resources that’s been
accumulated by Qatari businessmen during a past 4 decades.

“We are propitious to live in a nation with a fast growing
economy,” al-Thani, 65, pronounced in a Mar 16 e-mail. “In order
to advantage from this mercantile boom, one has to take the
initiative and be peaceful to seize opportunities.”

Through Al Faisal and a publicly traded subsidiary, Aamal
Company, al-Thani has fabricated a collection of oppulance hotels
and blurb genuine estate properties in 6 countries. He has a
net value of during slightest $2.2 billion, according to a Bloomberg
Billionaires Index, and has never seemed on an international
wealth ranking.

Al-Thani’s success is related to Qatar’s, that has the
world’s third-largest healthy gas pot and a top per
capita income, according to a International Monetary Fund.
Demand for gas has helped Qatar quadruple a sum domestic
product during a past decade, compared to a doubling in Turkey
and a 33 percent arise in a U.S, according to information gathered by
the World Bank.

Gas Production

The Connecticut-sized country’s GDP is approaching to expand
by 5 percent in 2014, some-more than Turkey or Brazil, according to
data gathered by a International Monetary Fund. Qatar’s
liquefied healthy gas production, roughly all of that is
controlled by a state, has helped boost al-Thani’s businesses,
including genuine estate, hotels, for-profit schools and the
country’s biggest industrial washing service.

“The oil and generally gas sectors yield enormous
‘rents’ or kingship income,” Matthew Gray, an associate
professor during a Australian National University in Canberra, and
author of “Qatar: Politics and a Challenges of Development,”
said in a Mar 6 e-mail.

Al-Thani is partial of Qatar’s statute family, a largest of
all a Gulf countries which, including extended members and in-laws, comment for as many as one-fifth of Qatar’s 300,000
citizens, according to Gray. The kingship income generated by oil
and gas sales trickles down to consumers by government
spending and subsidies that inspire unfamiliar investment and
trade, and advantage a private sector, he said.

Family Ties

The al-Thani name doesn’t pledge success, as certain
branches of a family might be kept on a margins by a ruling
branch, divided from energy and opportunity, to equivocate coups or
dissent. For those tighten to a Emir’s line a name is “a
ticket to opportunity,” pronounced Gray, as internal and foreign
businesses cite operative with a royal.

“The businesses that do best are those led by, or
connected, to a pivotal players, that can embody royals,
established businessman families, even some adored unfamiliar firms
and individuals” he said.

Al-Thani, who is a apart relations of a stream Emir,
Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, is one of a many distinguished Qatari
businessmen temperament a al-Thani name. Most of Qatar’s other
diversified, family-owned businesses, such as Doha-based
Alfardan Group and Darwish Holding, are owned by non-royals.

Building Boom

One of Al Faisal’s largest subsidiaries is Aamal, a Doha-based production and genuine estate organisation listed on a Qatar
stock sell that had 2.12 billion riyals ($582 million) in
revenue in 2013. Al-Thani controls 66 percent of Aamal directly
and by Al Faisal, according to association documents.

Al-Thani controls other blurb genuine estate properties
outside of his seductiveness in Aamal, including some-more than a dozen
residential and bureau buildings and 3 hotels in Doha,
according to Al Faisal’s website. He has 8 some-more hotel
properties underneath construction in a capital, partial of a city-wide building bang lighted after it won a rights to horde the
2022 FIFA World Cup.

The supervision skeleton to spend $45 billion — about what
Russia spent on a Sochi Winter Olympics — over a subsequent 15
years in a bid to boost a annual caller count some-more than five-fold, according to a Feb news by a Qatar Tourism
Authority.

The liquid of tourists, many flitting by Doha on Qatar
Airways flights, carried occupancy rates 6 percent in 2013,
according to information gathered by TRI Hospitality Consulting.

Diversifying Abroad

Qatar’s mutation from a fishing and pearl-diving
village to a skyscraper-packed capital is something al-Thani
witnessed first-hand. Born in 1948, 9 years after Qatar began
exporting oil, al-Thani started his initial business try in
1964, a tiny auto-parts distributor called Gettco Trading.

At that time, he said, Qatar was still farming and isolated.

“When we started my business, communications were very
limited,” al-Thani pronounced in a e-mail. “We were usually exposed
to a outward universe by traveling.”

As some-more oil income flowed into Qatar in a 1970s, al-Thani diversified to accommodate a needs of a country’s growing
economy. He shaped a construction-materials company, Linx Qatar,
and stretched into paint supply, gas stations and automobile washes.

“Starting a business is not a challenge, though creation a
business successful is,” al-Thani said. He declined to comment
on his net worth.

Al-Thani has been diversifying abroad, appropriation a Four
Seasons hotel in Cairo, a Grand Hyatt in Berlin, a Radisson
Blu Aqua in Chicago and a W in London’s Leicester Square. In
January, he bought Miami’s St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort for $213
million.

“Our prophesy is to build a eminent portfolio of prominent
hotels in terms of brand, plcae and architectural design,”
he said. The new non-Qatari acquisitions, he said, “have all
these elements.”

To hit a contributor on this story:
Devon Pendleton in New York at
dpendleton@bloomberg.net

To hit a editors obliged for this story:
Peter Newcomb at
pnewcomb2@bloomberg.net
Robert LaFranco

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