Posted - 03/12/2018 : 4:25:38 PM
| Saudis reportedly wielding veto power over top investor Prince Alwaleed and Kingdom Holdings
Investment decisions at Kingdom Holdings and by Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal are now subject to approval by the Saudi government, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Alwaleed is one of dozens of influential Saudis swept up in a controversial anti-corruption crackdown last year.
Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal remains chairman of Kingdom Holding Company following his release from detention, but the Saudi government reportedly has final say over decisions at the investment firm.
Investment decisions at Kingdom Holding are now subject to approval by the government, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing senior Saudi advisers. Kingdom Holding has $12.5 billion invested across more than a dozen sectors around the world, according to its website.
Alwaleed's personal investment portfolio is also under government control, according to the Journal. Alwaleed holds substantial stakes in companies like Citigroup, Twitter, Lyft and Time Warner. The Journal report does not indicate whether the government has exercised its newfound influence over these investments.
However, sources tell the Journal the government has already intervened in a major real estate project, ordering senior managers at Kingdom Holding to abandon the Jeddah Tower, which would be the world's tallest skyscraper when — and if — it is completed.
Officials have directed Kingdom Holding to instead focus its energy on a new city called Neom, which is expected to cost $500 billion to build.
The project was announced in October by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the influential king in waiting who is overseeing the kingdom's economic transformation and spearheaded the campaign that led to Alwaleed's detention.
Alwaleed was among dozens of influential Saudis swept up and detained at the Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh in a campaign meant to crack down on graft, according to the government. On Sunday, The New York Times published an investigation alleging the detainees faced coercion and physical abuse.Saudi officials have directed Kingdom Holdings to abandon the massive Jeddah Tower and instead focus on an economic city announced in October by the powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the Journal reports.