Abu Dhabi shakes up wealth funds with top royals chairing
By Yousef Saba
DUBAI (Reuters) – Abu Dhabi announced a reshuffle at the top of its two biggest sovereign wealth funds on Thursday, appointing senior members of the royal family as chairmen.
Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan, one of the most powerful members of Abu Dhabi’s royal family, was named chair of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), among the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, the government’s media office said.
Sheikh Tahnoun is the brother of United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who took office last May after acting as the country’s de facto ruler for years.
ADIA is estimated by Global SWF to manage $993 billion in assets, while the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute puts the figure at $790 billion.
The wealth fund’s last chairman was the previous UAE president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who died last year.
Sheikh Tahnoun is considered one of President Sheikh Mohamed’s most trusted advisers, and has handled sensitive foreign policy files in his role as national security adviser.
He also heads ADQ, Abu Dhabi’s third biggest investment fund, and oversees a vast business empire that includes Abu Dhabi’s largest listed entity, International Holding Company, and the country’s biggest lender, First Bank of Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi also changed the top team of its second biggest wealth fund, Mubadala Investment Company, with Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, owner of Manchester City football club and also the president’s brother, appointed chairman on Thursday.
The UAE president is appointing his brothers as chairmen at state sovereign wealth funds rather than chairing them himself.
Sheikh Mansour succeeds the president as chairman of Mubadala and remains on ADIA’s board, as does Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed. Newcomers to ADIA’s board announced on Thursday were Sheikh Khaled bin Mohammed bin Zayed, the president’s son and chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office, Jassem Mohammed Al Zaabi and Hamad Mohammed Al Suwaidi.
Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, Mubadala’s CEO, remains on Mubadala’s board, as does energy ministry Suhail Al Mazrouei and Abdulhamid Saeed. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohammed, one of the president’s sons, joins Mubadala’s board along with Sultan Al Jaber, COP28 president-designate and CEO of national oil giant ADNOC, and Saif Saeed Ghobash.
(Reporting by Yousef Saba and Rachna Uppal; Additional reporting by Yomna Ehab in Cairo; Editing by Alex Richardson and Susan Fenton)