Lubna al-Olayan (Saudi Financier/Businesswoman)

lubna_olayan.jpgLubna Suliman Olayan (born August 4, 1955 - )is a Saudi business woman. Born to Suliman Olayan and Maryam bint Jassim Al Abdulwahab.

Considered to be one of the most influential businesswomen as was listed as one of the top 100 most influential people of 2005 by Time magazine.

In 2004, Ms. Olayan was the first woman in Saudi history to deliver an opening keynote address at a major conference at the Jeddah Economic Forum.

Ms. Lubna S. Olayan is the chief executive officer of the Olayan Financing Company (OFC), the holding entity for the Olayan Group's operations in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Middle East.

The Group was founded in 1947 by her father, the late successful entrepreneur Sulaiman S. Olayan, The Olayan Group is a private multinational enterprise engaged in distribution, manufacturing, services and investments.

OFC operates or actively participates in more than 40 companies, often in partnership with leading multinationals. OFC is also one of the largest investors in the Saudi and regional stock markets.

Ms. Olayan sits on the board of The Olayan Group along with her brother Khaled and sisters Hayat and Hutham. It is thought that the private family has accumulated a fortune that tops $10 billion.

In February 2005, Ms. Olayan was appointed as a non-executive director to the Board of WPP, and in December 2004, was elected to sit on the Board of the Saudi Hollandi Bank, a publicly listed company in Saudi Arabia.

In September 2006 and April 2007, Ms. Olayan joined the International Advisory Boards of Rolls Royce and Citigroup, respectively. Ms. Olayan also served on the Board of Chelsfield plc, the UK property developer, from 1996 to 2004.

Ms. Olayan is a member of the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum, and the International Advisory Board of the Council on Foreign Relations, which she joined in November and December of 2005 respectively.

Ms. Olayan joined the Board of Directors of INSEAD in December 2005, and has been a member of its International Council since March 1997. In April 2007, she was elected as a member of the Board of Trustees for Cornell University.

Ms. Olayan also joined the Advisory Board of Effat College, a private and non-profit girls college in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in April 2006.

Ms. Olayan has served on the Board of Trustees of the "Arab Thought Foundation," a think tank based in Beirut focusing on issues facing the Arab world, since January 2002.

In May 2006, Ms. Olayan joined the Board of Al Fanar, a non-governmental, non-profit venture, which supports grassroots organizations in the Arab world.

Ms. Olayan was elected to the Board of the Down Syndrome Charitable Association in June 2005, a not-for-profit organization based in Riyadh. She was also appointed to the Board of Trustees of King Abdullah University for Science and Technology (KAUST).

She is married to an international attorney, John Xefos and they have three daughters all living in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Related Links:
Lubna al-Olayan on Wikipedia