The Euromoney Kuwait Conference

Keynote

Omar Alghanim

Chairman / Chief Executive Officer

Gulf Bank / Alghanim Industries


Omar Alghanim is the chief executive officer of Alghanim Industries, one of the largest companies in the region, with more than 30 businesses in 40 countries. He is also the chairman of Gulf Bank, one of the oldest and fastest-growing commercial banks in the GCC. Before joining Alghanim Industries, Omar worked in the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley in London, where he was involved in mergers and acquisitions, financial restructuring and corporate finance. During his tenure, he worked on large global transactions such as the $71bn merger of Astra and Zeneca to form AstraZenaca (the largest pharmaceuticals deal at that time) and the $29bn merger of Hoechst and Rhone-Poulenc to form Aventis. In addition, Omar played a key role in the founding of two major financial services firms: Asiya Investments and Perella Weinberg Partners. Omar was elected as the chairman of Gulf Bank in March 2013. Previously, he held the position of deputy chairman, being elected in 2012, and he has served as a board member since 2009. Beyond his role as CEO of Alghanim Industries and chairman of Gulf Bank, Omar is involved in promoting the economic development of the MENA region, having served as the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) chair of the MENA Regional Business Council and chair of the initiative, ‘A New Vision for Arab Employment’ from 2014 until 2015. His commitment to the WEF and its mission to ‘improve the state of the world’ spans over 10 years. In recognition of his contributions, he was appointed by the WEF as a ‘Young Global Leader’. Omar was also selected as the co-chair of the WEF’s MENA meeting in Jordan in May 2015. During the 2016 WEF annual meeting in Davos, Omar highlighted the critical question of the future of jobs and championed the importance of gender parity in creating inclusive economies. For the 2017 WEF Annual Meeting, he was selected to serve on the Stewardship Board of the Education, Gender, and Work System Initiative. His interest in empowering youth, particularly through teaching entrepreneurship, goes even further and he is a founding member and board member of INJAZ Al-Arab, and serves as the chairman of INJAZ-Kuwait, part of the international non-profit NGO, Junior Achievement. Omar also takes an active role in addressing the multitude of complex and overwhelming challenges facing refugees in the region, acting as a member of the UNHCR MENA advisory council. In 2016, he received the Knowledge and Education Development CEO Excellence Award from the Middle East Excellence Awards Institute, which recognises business leaders who have contributed to the growth and development of the Gulf region and greater global economy. Omar received a bachelor’s of science in business commerce from New York University’s Stern School of Business in 1997 and has an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he also sits on the MENA and Central Asia Advisory Board.


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Tue 26 Sep 2017

J.W. Marriott, Kuwait City