Bakr Bin Ladin
Saudi Bin Laden Group
As chairman of the Jeddah-based Saudi Binladin Group , Bakr Bin Ladin holds considerable influence in the construction world. Despite the region’s stuttering construction sector, he has managed to expand the business. In March, the firm joined together with Qatari Diar to launch a joint venture holding company, which is expected to have a massive capital base. The new venture will have two umbrella firms, one of which will carry out mega contracting and construction works in Qatar and the rest of the world. It is also currently working on a $994.6m contract to design and build 30 parcels in King Abdullah Financial District, Saudi Arabia.
“It’s an enormous challenge and Binladin might be the only contractor in Saudi Arabia capable of producing 30 parcels in 38 months,” KAFD project manager Waleed Alesia recently said.
The Binladin Group was founded by Bakr’s father Mohammed Bin Ladin in the Saudi Red Sea port city of Jeddah in the 1950s. The group has since grown into one of the kingdom’s largest companies, and was entrusted by the royal court with expanding holy sites in Mecca and Medina.
The Binladin construction group has also built several palaces in Riyadh and Jeddah for members of the Saudi Royal family, and carried out restoration work following an arson attack on Jerusalem’s Al Aqsa Mosque in 1969. A major power broker in the Saudi business capital, Bakr tends to keep a low profile. Still, his reputation precedes him. “We have a mayor and all kinds of political heavyweights. But the true ruler of Jeddah is Bakr Bin Ladin,” a source said.