Sulaiman al Fahim, the UAE tycoon at the centre of a deal to buy Portsmouth Football Club, has been replaced as chief executive of Hydra Properties, it emerged on Wednesday.
Al Fahim will become a member of the company’s board of directors, said Ahmed Khalil, Hydra’s commercial director, while Ali bin Sulayem of Hydra’s parent company, Royal Group, will replace him as chief executive.
“Dr Fahim did an amazing job of getting Hydra Properties to where it is in a few years,” he said in comments published by UAE daily The National.
“Dr [al Fahim] has been promoted for all the good work he has done.”
The surprise move comes just two weeks after Ali Bin Sulayem, a board member of The Royal Group, the parent company that owns Hydra, said Al Fahim would stay on as CEO, despite his new role at Portsmouth FC.
“The board and chairman are fully satisfied with Sulaiman Al Fahim’s performance over the last three years at Hydra Properties. We are fully confident of his management during this property crisis, and we are here to support Al Fahim and his management team,” he said at the time.
Hydra Properties has faced a barrage of complaints from investors in Hydra Village, a residential development near Abu Dhabi International Airport, which is two years behind schedule.
Last month, Arabian Business revealed how Al Fahim had signed an agreement to buy Portsmouth, a Premier League club, a deal that is going through the due diligence process at the moment.