Citigroup’s largest individual shareholder, Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, said Thursday he planned to increase his stake in Citigroup back to 5%, even as shares of the firm have plummeted in recent weeks.The move by Alwaleed, a long-time investor in the bank, follows the U.S. government’s decision to inject some $25 billion into the New York City-based bank. That left Alwaleed with about a 4% stake in Citigroup. In a press release from his holding company, Alwaleed expressed his faith in Citigroup management including CEO Vikram Pandit and added that he believed in the company was doing what is necessary to weather the current economic crisis. Alwaleed’s firm did not provide terms of the purchase including how many shares he would purchase or at what price.
In 2007, Forbes estimated the 50 year old Prince Talal’s net worth at $20.3 billion ranking him the the 13th richest person in the world.
Previous posts have discussed Prince Talal’s donations to the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), both part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, as well as his support of the Georgetown University Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (CCMU), run by long-time Muslim Brotherhood supporter Dr. John Esposito. In May, an Arab business Prince Talal has also made numerous financial contributions to a pan-Islamic interfaith dialog organization that is closely tied to the global Muslim Brotherhood and which has an antisemitic statement posted on its website. In March, the Kingdom Foundation established by Prince Talal was one of the sponsors of a conference held by the World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists (WCMP), a new international Islamic philanthropic organization with strong Muslim Brotherhood representation.