FaceOf: Abdallah S. Jum’ah, chairman of the Saudi Investment Bank

Abdallah S. Jum’ah
Updated 23 January 2019

FaceOf: Abdallah S. Jum’ah, chairman of the Saudi Investment Bank

  • Jum’ah worldwide business experience includes former memberships of JPMorgan Chase International Council and Halliburton’s board of directors
  • Jum’ah has been on the board of trustees at the American University in Cairo since 1998

Abdallah S. Jum’ah is co-chair of the US-Saudi Arabian Business Council (USSABC) and has been chairman of the Saudi Investment Bank since 2010.

He was CEO of Saudi Aramco between 1995 and 2008 and, in 2003, was selected by Fortune magazine as one of the most influential business people in the world.

Jum’ah has been on the board of trustees at the American University in Cairo since 1998, also serving as vice chairman of the international advisory board at King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals between 2007 and 2009. He was patron of the IFP School, Paris, for one academic year.

His worldwide business experience includes former memberships of JPMorgan Chase International Council and Halliburton’s board of directors.

Jum’ah is also a former member of the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum (WEF). He was appointed energy community leader by the WEF in 2005.

He holds a bachelor’s in political science from the American University of Beirut, and completed a management development program at Harvard Business School while working for Saudi Aramco.

Jum’ah was awarded an honorary doctorate by Seoul’s Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in 2007.

A report published earlier this month by the USSABC said the Kingdom’s defense sector would experience strong growth over the next decade and that it would contribute SR231.27 billion ($61.6 billion) to the national gross domestic product by 2020.


‘Dare to dream,’ football hero Thierry Henry tells Saudi fans

Footballing great Thierry Henry thrills fans as he signs 10 footballs on stage and tosses them to the audience. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 14 min 34 sec ago

‘Dare to dream,’ football hero Thierry Henry tells Saudi fans

  • Fans got up close and personal with the former champion during a segment called the lightning round, where Henry had to answer questions in 10 seconds

DHAHRAN: Stepping onto the Tanween stage in front of a sold-out venue full of cheering fans, footballing great Thierry Henry was quick to say how “hyped” he was to meet his Saudi supporters.
As a guest and speaker at Tanween Season, the former Arsenal striker and French international faced a busy schedule on Saturday after arriving at King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) in Dhahran.
First, he had a “meet and greet” with fans, many wearing Arsenal shirts, which was quickly followed by a discussion of the theme for this year’s event, “Play.”
After two young footballers from Riyadh performed a series of tricks that included balancing a football on one leg, then kicking it in the air to land on their backs, Henry said: “I would have broken my back trying to do that. It’s not easy.”
On his second visit to Saudi Arabia — the first was to Riyadh last year — Henry said that he was impressed by this year’s Tanween theme since he had seen firsthand the results of a children’s quality-of-life program at Tanween.
“What I liked most was to see the smiles on the faces of those children when I was walking around the impressive building. Being able to dream is key for me, but seeing how the youngsters were interacting, and how happy they were with their families walking around, was just priceless,” he said.
Growing up, Henry’s father played an important role in his development. The footballer did not miss a beat when answering that his father was his idol. “My dad was the hardest man to please; to put a smile on his face was the hardest thing to do,” he said.
Although the footballer grew up in a “not so great” Paris neighborhood, he considered it an enriching cultural experience. “It was great for me at the time because it allowed me to travel, although I wasn’t really traveling,” he said.
France’s colonial history meant he was exposed to different cultures early in his life.
“If I going upstairs to have couscous, to the second floor to have Senegalese food, or to eat with the Portuguese downstairs, it allowed me to travel, staying where I was,” he explained.
During his talk Henry showed that his Arabic extends to common niceties such as “shukran,” “afwan” and “alsalamau alaikum.”
Having an impact on the English Premier League and his role in Arsenal’s record-breaking era almost two decades ago are more important to him that being considered the world’s best striker, he said. As for his favorite stadium, Henry was quick to choose Highbury.
Offering advice to younger Saudis in the audience, Henry urged them to face their problems calmly and cleverly.
“Don’t run away. Face it and don’t be scared to fail. Come back again, but smarter,” he said.
Fans got up close and personal with the former champion during a segment called the lightning round, where Henry had to answer questions in 10 seconds. That revealed that he has always admired Muhammad Ali as the greatest, Messi is his current favorite football player and winning the World Cup was the most memorable moment in his career.
After the talk, Henry thrilled the crowd — a reminder of his playing days — by tossing 10 footballs to lucky fans who cheered as he left the stage.