HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, Chairman of Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) received The Rt Hon. Tony Blair Former British Prime Minister and official Envoy to the Quartet on the Middle East on Sunday 19th April 2015. The meeting was also attended by Ms. Hassna Alturki, Executive Manager for International Relations to HRH the Chairman, Mr. Fahad Bin Nafil, Senior Executive Assistant to HRH the Chairman, Mr. Ahmed Altubaishi, Executive Assistant to HRH the Chairman and from Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation the attendees were Mrs. Abir Kaki, Secretary General and Princess Lamia Bint Majid Alsaud, Executive Manager, Media & Communication.
The meeting began as The Rt Hon. Tony Blair thanked Prince Alwaleed for his hospitality and warm welcome. Prince Charles and Prince Alwaleed discussed the importance of the long established Saudi-British relations and the efforts made by both countries to maintain it. The two also discussed a number of general local, regional and international issues. Also, during the meeting Prince Alwaleed and Mr. Blair discussed the Prince’s investments through KHC in the United Kingdom and his Highness’s philanthropic global projects in addition to the activities of Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation that is chaired by Prince Alwaleed.
Prince Alwaleed’s investments through KHC in the UK include ownership of 50% in The Savoy hotel that is managed by Fairmont in which KHC owns a 35% stake in, and Citigroup in the financial sector. In addition, other investments include a 47.5% interest in the Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts is equally co-owned by the billionaire Bill Gates’ Cascade, and 5% of the Four Seasons is owned by Isadore Sharp founder of the Four Seasons; which manages 3 hotels; London at Park Lane, London at Canary Wharf and the third in Hampshire.
In February 2015, Prince Alwaleed received HRH Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales an accompanying delegation in Riyadh. In 2014, Prince Alwaleed received Prince Charles and an accompanying delegation at Kingdom Tower. In 2013, Prince Alwaleed received in his office in Riyadh Lord Green, Minister of State for Trade & Investment and an accompanying delegation. Also 2013, Prince Alwaleed received in his office in Riyadh a British delegation from the UK Embassy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In the same year, Prince Alwaleed received in his office in Riyadh the Duke of Westminster Major-General Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor and an accompanying delegation.
Moreover in 2013, Prince Alwaleed received HE Mr. Nick Baird, Chief Executive of UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and an accompanying delegation. Furthermore, Prince Alwaleed received HRH Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales at His Highness’s Palace in Riyadh. In addition, Prince Alwaleed visited 10 Downing Street in Westminster, London and was received by British Prime Minister David Cameron. In 2012, Prince Alwaleed received The Rt Hon. Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alderman David Wootton at his office in Riyadh and an accompanying delegation.
In 2011, Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation-Global announced a donation of £1 million to Turquoise Mountain towards an endowment that will sustain Turquoise Mountain Foundation over 15 years. The Turquoise Mountain Fundraising Dinner was held at Clarence House and was hosted by HRH Prince Charles. During the event, the Turquoise Mountain Foundation, Afghanistan, displayed handcrafted objects created by trainees at the Institute for Afghan Arts and Architecture. In 2012 The Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation donated SAR 1,916,777 for the completion of the Dumfries House project-Temple and Temple Memorial Garden. And in 2014 Alwaleed Foundation Has supported Dumfries House with SAR 3,427,000 towards providing learning experience and educational programs. In 2011, HRH Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh who is Chancellor of the University of Cambridge and the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, formally opened the HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Centre of Islamic Studies at the University of Cambridge. During the opening ceremony the Chancellor Prince Philip awarded the 800th Anniversary Medal for Outstanding Philanthropy to Prince Alwaleed.
In 2010, HRH Prince Charles and HRH Prince Alwaleed inaugurated The Savoy hotel one of KHC’s major investments in the United Kingdom. In June 2010, Prince Alwaleed was received by Prince Charles, at Clarence House during their visit to the UK. In the same year, Prince Alwaleed was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor honoris causa from the University of Edinburgh in a ceremony at the Signet Library, Parliament Square, and also inaugurated the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Centre for the Study of Islam at Edinburgh University. The degree was conferred by HRH Prince Philip. The Duke of Edinburgh is Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh and the University of Cambridge.
In 2008, HRH made a £16 million endowment to create two new research centres for Islamic studies at the University of Cambridge and the University of Edinburgh (£8 million for each university). The new centers carry out both research and public engagement designed to enhance understanding between the Muslim world and the West. In 2002, the Prince made a £1 million endowment to the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter.
His Highness had received the Duke of York in 2007 and 2009. Furthermore, Prince Alwaleed had received the Prince of Wales at Kingdom Resort in Riyadh in 2006 and the Prince visited Highgrove in 2005. Prince Alwaleed also met with Prince Charles in 2003 during the GCC Polo Cup event at The Guards Polo Club in Windsor when Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth presented Prince Charles’s team with the trophy, jointly with Prince Alwaleed.