Company: Saudi BinLadin Group
Bakr Bin Laden is undoubtedly one of the most powerful figures in construction in this (or any other) region. He has been head of the biggest contracting company in the GCC’s biggest construction market for 26 years since the premature death of his brother, Salem, in 1988.
The family-owned firm was started by his father, Mohammed, in 1931 and has been the trusted builder for the Saudi Royal family for over 60 years. It has a hand in many of the Kingdom’s biggest civils projects and is currently handling the $21bn expansion project at the Grand Mosque in Makkah.
At the same time, Saudi Binladin Group (SBG) is continuing to progress with works at the $7.2bn King Abdulaziz International Airport expansion in Jeddah, due to open next year. Also due to finish next year is Haramain High-Speed rail, for which it is building the major stations.
SBG has recently started work on the world’s tallest building – the 1km-high Kingdom Tower in the family’s home city of Jeddah. It is not only the project’s main contractor, it has a 16.6% share in its developer, Jeddah Economic Company.
Longer term projects include the King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh and King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh, where it has carried out infrastructure works.
Although absent from the list of firms that won work on Riyadh Metro, the company is part of a consortium building the Green Line on the Doha Metro and will be looking to get involved in several other light rail projects in the Kingdom.
Its biggest project win over the last year has been a $3.5bn contract to build 12 towers for the Abraj Kudai mixed-use project in Makkah. Ten of these towers will be 30 storeys and two will be 45 storeys.