His home? A 420-room palace in Riyadh
One of the world’s richest people, Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, has pledged to donate his entire $32bn (£20bn) wealth pile to charity.
Prince Alwaleed, who is number 34 on the Forbes rich list, was praised by Bill Gates who hailed his decision as an “inspiration to all of us working in philanthropy around the world”.
The Saudi Arabian prince’s wealth will go to his charitable organisation, Alwaleed Philanthropies, to which he has already donated $3.5bn.
In a statement, the prince said: “Philanthropy is a personal responsibility, which I embarked upon more than three decades ago and is an intrinsic part of my Islamic faith. This is very much separate from my ownership in Kingdom Holding.”
Here are 5 facts you need to know about Prince Alwaleed bin Talal
1. He sued Forbes magazine for understating his wealth
In 2013, Forbes magazine ran an article which valued the Saudi billionaire’s wealth at $20bn. The Prince claimed that his wealth had been undervalued by $9.6bn. What followed was a messy legal battle that the prince spent over $2m on, small change for him of course. Who won in the end? This Forbes article is an interesting account of what happened.
2. Twitter, Apple, News Corp – his big stakes in big businesses
His list of stakes in big assets is endless. Through his investment vehicle Kingdom Holding, he invested $600m in Twitter in 2011. He also owns shares in Apple, Citigroup and News Corp and the Savoy Hotel in London and the Four Seasons hotel in New York
3. He owns an estimated $700 million in jewellery
Yep, that’s right. The prince and his crown jewels were estimated to worth over $700m in 2013.
4. His home? A 420-room palace in Riyadh
Prince Alwaleed has more rooms in his palace than there are days in a whole year. *Gulp*.
His home has the usual billionaire features – three swimming pools, tennis courts, bejewelled walls etc etc.
5. Bentleys for fighter pilots reportedly involved in a bombing campaign on Yemen
Back in April, the prince was slammed on social media for reportedly gifting Bentleys to Saudi pilots.
The Prince wrote on Twitter: “In appreciation of their role in this operation, I’m honoured to offer 100 Bentley cars to the 100 Saudi [fighter] pilots.”