Ukraine War began: Alwaleed bin Talal placed a $500 million bet on Russia.

Immediately before and after the invasion of Ukraine this year, one of Saudi Arabia’s most well-known investors, Kingdom Holding, invested hundreds of millions of dollars in Russian energy companies, the company said in a filing on Sunday.

Kingdom, which is primarily owned by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, made the investments despite attempts by western politicians to put further pressure on Moscow and threaten sanctions against it, which they eventually started enforcing in late February.

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Prince Alwaleed bin Talal made a $500 million bet on Russia.

The majority-owned by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Kingdom made the investments despite attempts by western leaders to put further pressure on Moscow and the prospect of sanctions, which they eventually started enforcing in late February.

$364 million of the roughly $500 million in investments went to Gazprom in February, with the remaining funds going to Rosneft and Lukoil in both those months and in March. On February 24, Russian invaders entered Ukraine on President Vladimir Putin’s orders.

Prince Alwaleed bin Talal

Saudi Arabian billionaire businessman, investor, philanthropist, and royal Al Waleed bin Talal Al Saud. In 2008, he was included in Time magazine’s annual list of the 100 most important persons in the world, the Time 100. Al Waleed is the grandson of Riad Al Solh, the first prime minister of Lebanon, and Abdulaziz, the first monarch of Saudi Arabia.

The Kingdom Holding Company, which has investments in businesses in the financial services, tourism and hospitality, media, entertainment, retail, agriculture, petrochemicals, aviation, technology, and real estate sectors, was founded by Al Waleed, who also serves as its chief executive officer and owns 95 percent of the company. The company’s market capitalization was above $18 billion in 2013.

He owns the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris as well as a portion of the Plaza Hotel through Zaveriwala Holdings LLC. He has been dubbed the “Arabian Warren Buffett” by Time. Al Waleed was ranked as the 7th richest person in the world by Forbes in November 2017 with a net worth of $39.8 billion.

In a crackdown that the Saudi government billed as an anti-corruption campaign, Al Waleed and other notable Saudis, including fellow billionaires Waleed bin Ibrahim Al Ibrahim and Saleh Abdullah Kamel, were detained in Saudi Arabia on November 4, 2017. Al Waleed is accused of engaging in government extortion, money laundering, and bribes.

Since then, some of the prisoners have been housed at the Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh. Al Waleed spent over three months in custody before being freed on January 27, 2018, as a result of some sort of monetary arrangement. Due to a lack of up-to-date information, he was removed from the World’s Billionaires list in March 2018. He was ranked among the “Top 100 most powerful Arabs” by Gulf Business from 2013 to 2021.

Statements by the govt.

The Public Investment Fund, the government’s sovereign wealth fund, claimed to have purchased a 16.8% interest in Kingdom Holding in May, months after the investments. However, given the western pressure on Moscow, it would be impossible for a sizable Saudi corporation to make significant investments in Russia without the government’s approval.

Other investments made public on Sunday include a $220 million investment in the UK pension and savings firm Phoenix Group and a $221 million investment in the investment manager M&G. Additionally, it invested in BlackRock TCP Capital, Alibaba, Uber, and Lyft. These, according to Kingdom Holding, are a part of a $3.4 billion investment strategy that spans three years. In addition to owning a share in Twitter, the corporation has assets in the Four Season hotel chain.

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The ties of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia and Russia have developed strong ties and cooperate with each other in Opec+ on oil production. Since President Joe Biden took office, it has experienced a deterioration in relations with Washington as a result of his campaign promise to isolate Saudi Arabia over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi operatives. The CIA claimed Prince Mohammed was in charge of the plan to “arrest or kill” Khashoggi, but the prince has refuted this claim.

Ukraine War began: Alwaleed bin Talal placed a $500 million bet on Russia.
Ukraine War began: Alwaleed bin Talal placed a $500 million bet on Russia.

Since then, Biden has had to retract his statement, and during his July visit, he met with Prince Mohammed to press for more oil output to combat rising prices and inflation.

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