43. Amr Diab They call him the ‘Father of Mediterranean music’ and Diab, perhaps Egypt’s most famous singer, has dominated the Arab music scene since the late 1980s. Recent months have seen his popularity slide; his absence from Egypt during the uprising has led to denunciations from some quarters that his silence was a tacit expression of support for the former regime — but certainly he has not been included on a list compiled by activists of Egyptian stars who showed support for Hosni Mubarak. Diab is believed to be the best selling Arab recording artist of all time. He was awarded the World Music Award for Best Selling Middle Eastern Artist four times and has sold well over 50 million albums.
61. Mohammed El Erian Egypt-born Mohammed El Erian is CEO and co-CIO of PIMCO - the world’s biggest bond trader. He re-joined PIMCO at the end of 2007 after serving for two years as president and CEO of Harvard Management Company, the entity that manages Harvard’s endowment and related accounts. El Erian has published widely on international economic and finance topics. His book, When Markets Collide, was a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, won the Financial Times/Goldman Sachs 2008 Business Book of the Year and was named a book of the year by The Economist and one of the best business books of all time by the Independent. He was named to Foreign Policy’s list of “Top 100 Global Thinkers” for 2009, 2010 and 2011.
96. Sherife AbdelMessih Sherife AbdelMessih is the founder and CEO of Future Energy Corporation (FEC), a company that serves the renewable energy industry in the region. Along with his partners he is now creating the first investment vehicle of its kind in MENA that will be focusing on Renewable Energy and CleanTech investments in emerging economies. Sherife was also a consultant on the first solar power plant in Egypt and the MENA region throughout the bidding, and contract negotiation process. He has authored multiple energy programs on the transformation of the Egyptian Energy Economy by 2020 and 2050, which has been endorsed by political parties in Egypt.
158. Magdi Yacoub Dubbed the ‘King of Hearts’, Egyptian-born surgeon Magdi Yacoub has received many accolades from his adopted home in the UK. In 1992 he was awarded a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II and in 2007 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Pride of Britain Awards. Now almost fully retired, Dr Yacoub will forever be known as the surgeon who has performed well over 20,000 heart operations — including more than 2,000 heart transplants — more than any other surgeon in the entire world.
165. Wael Ghonim At the beginning of last year, Wael Ghonim was an ordinary IT executive — albeit working for arguably the decade’s most prominent firm — living in a comfortable villa in the UAE. By mid-February last year, the bespectacled 31-year-old father of two had become the face of the Egyptian revolution, which resulted in the overthrow of president Hosni Mubarak. Within a few months, TIME magazine had added him in its “Time 100” list of the 100 most influential people of 2011. Ghonim also received the JFK Profile in Courage Award and was presented the award by Caroline Kennedy, daughter of President John F. Kennedy. nSince the protests in Tahrir Square, however, the one-time revolutionary hero has had a quiet few months. Ghonim has taken a long-term sabbatical from his job at Google, and has signed a book deal. He attended an IMF meeting in late 2011, and has attracted criticism from Egyptians who argue that he is too heavily focused on economic issues, rather than political ones.
180. Dalia Mogahed Egyptian-born Dalia Mogahed was propelled onto the international arena when she became the first Muslim veiled woman to be appointed to a position in the White House. nMogahed was selected as an advisor to US president Barack Obama on the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighbourhood Partnerships in April 2011. She joined 25 other religious and secular representatives who report to the president on the role religion can play in resolving social problems. Mogahed also heads up research organisation the Gallup American Centre for Muslim Studies and is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the Arab World.
189. Fayez Sarofim Born in Egypt, Sarofim is a graduate of the University of California Berkeley and holds a Harvard MBA. He founded Fayez Sarofim & Company in 1958 and as of March 30, 2012, the firm had US$26 billion in assets under management. Divorced with five children and living in Houston, Sarofim was referred to by Forbes as “Sphinx”. He handles the investment portfolios for a wide range of clients — pension plans, foundations, endowments, and individuals. An independent entity, it currently has a team of 22 investment professionals. He has been grooming his son, Chris, to take over — or perhaps has plans to sell the entire company. His other children are well known socialites on the Texas arts and party circuit. Apart from his work in the world of finance, Sarofim is also a major contributor to the Houston Ballet and the Museum of Fine Arts. In 2006, he was rated by Forbes as one of the 500 wealthiest people in the world.
192. Mohammed Nasr Abdeen Abu Dhabi-based Union National Bank is one of the UAE’s largest lenders, with 49 locations across the country. nIt is headed by Mohammed Nasr Abdeen, who has steered the bank through the economic crisis with a conservative approach to lending. Abdeen is also vice-chairman of the bank’s new Egypt operation. The bank reported a small increase in first quarter net profit, beating Reuters’ analyst forecasts, helped by an increase in net interest income and income from Islamic financing. Net profits at the bank rose 3.2 percent to AED471.1m (US$128.26m) compared to AED456.36m in the year-ago period, UNB said in a bourse statement.
202. Mohammed Shafiq Gabr Egyptian businessman and philanthropist Mohammed Shafiq Gabr is the chairman of ARTOC Group for Investment & Development - a multi-disciplined investment holding company with assets of $1.1bn, handed down by his father. He has also played a major role in a number of international organisations, including the World Bank. His company has interests in real estate, engineering, consumer products and media, and employs some 3,500 Egyptians, making Gabr one of the most well-known businessmen in the populous Arab country. As a result of his professional success, billionaire Gabr has a wealth of high profile connections both in Egypt and Washington, and is renowned in elevated circles. Outside of work, he is an art collector and keen traveler, and speaker of idiomatic American with degrees in business and economics from Cairo’s American University and the University of London.
246. Ahmed Zewail One of the Arab world’s most successful scientists, Ahmed Zewail makes the power list again. In a competitive landscape, Zewail – best known for winning the Nobel Prize for Chemistry – has also bagged the Wolf Prize in Chemistry, the Tolman Medal, and Egypt’s highest state honour, the Grand Collar of the Nile. He has been a scientific advisor to US President Barack Obama, and backed by the White House, became America’s first science envoy, visiting Muslim countries to promote the sciences.
254. Mohammed Al Fayed Along with his brothers, Al Fayed founded a shipping company in Egypt, moved its headquarters to Italy, and set up additional offices in London. It was then that he moved to England. In the 1960s, he met with Sheikh Rashid al Maktoum and was entrusted to help transform Dubai. In 1968, for instance, he set up the International Marine Services (IMS) in the city. Among his numerous business interests, the year 1984 saw Al Fayed and his brothers purchase a 30 percent stake in House of Fraser, a group that included Harrods. In 1985, the remaining 70 percent was bought for £615m ($946m). Harrods was eventually sold to Qatar Holdings for £1.5bn ($2.30bn). Other significant businesses for Al Fayed include the Ritz Hotel in Paris and the West London football club Fulham F.C.
265. Alaa Al Aswany Alaa Al Aswany is one of Egypt’s most famous writers and a founding member of the political movement Kefaya. He has contributed many articles to Egyptian newspapers, ranging from literature to politics. One of his most popular novels, The Yacoubian Building, has been translated into some 30 languages. Al Aswany was one of the few prominent faces during the Egyptian revolution last year.
267. Omar Sharif A superstar to cinema audiences in the West and the East, Omar Sharif is the undisputed father of the Egyptian film scene. His most famous roles were in David Lean classics ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ and ‘Dr Zhivago’. He has been nominated for an Academy Award, won two Golden Globe Awards and was given a medal by UNESCO in recognition of his significant contributions to world film and cultural diversity. nBack in Cairo, the former bridge maestro condemned former president Hosni Mubarak in January of last year, saying “given that the entire Egyptian people don’t want him and he’s been in power 30 years, that’s enough.” He recently assigned a writer, Salwa Baker, to work on his memoirs.
270. Hassan Heikal Formerly at Goldman Sachs, Hassan Heikal joined EFG-Hermes in 1995, and became an integral part in the success of the bank, making it one of the leading investment banking franchises in the Arab world. nHe has been serving as CEO since 2007, and was previously head of the firm’s investment banking division. Under his watch, the group advised numerous clients, including Vodafone plc, PepsiCo and Pirelli, among many others. Heikal holds a degree from the Faculty of Economics and Political Science at Cairo University. EFG-Hermes has recently announced a definitive agreement with Qinvest, involving EFG Hermes’ Brokerage, Research, Asset Management, Investment Banking and Infrastructure Fund businesses. The transaction is considered one of the largest foreign direct investments in Egypt since the 25 January Revolution. However, last month Heikal was indicted on corruption charges, alongside his co-CEO.
280. Naguib Sawiris Egyptian-born Naguib Sawiris was executive chairman of the telecommunications companies Wind Telecom and Orasco Telecom Holding (OTH) before turning to politics in May 2011. The firm launched Mobinil, Egypt’s first mobile operator in 1998. OTH has 20,000 employees and manages eleven GSM operators around the globe. In the beginning, OTH’s strategy was to target underpenetrated high population markets. However, soon after it started to pursue more developed markets with the launch of Wind Mobile by its Globalive subsidiary in Canada in 2009.
284. Ahmed Heikal Before establishing Egyptian private equity firm Citadel Capital, Ahmed Heikal served as an executive board member and managing director of EFG-Hermes, a firm he helped transform from a small financial consultancy into one of the leading investment banks in the Arab world. Private equity firm Citadel Capital has ninteen Opportunity-Specific Funds control platform companies with investments of $9.5bn in fifteen industries including energy, mining, agrifoods, cement, transportation and retail. Since its founding in 2004, the firm has returned $2.2bn in cash to its co-investors — more than any other MEA private equity firm.
286. Sayed Badreya Egyptian-born filmmaker and actor Sayed Badreya always wanted to be a star. His dream came true when he won roles in major Hollywood films such as The Insider, Three Kings, and Independence Day. nAfter attending New York University film school, he moved to Hollywood and worked in the film industry, first as an assistant to actor/director Anthony Perkins, then with director James Cameron on True Lies. Today, he runs his production company, Zoom In Focus, and is this year set to star in the Sacha Baron Cohen film, The Dictator.
288. Eng Hani Azir Engineer Hani Azer is the architect behind Europe’s largest train station in Berlin, Germany, completed in 2006. Much more than a train station, the $700m Berlin Hauptbahnhof is a tourist attraction, with over 80 shops in the terminal and a featured outdoor beach. He was voted 13th among the top 50 Berliners in 2006. Prior to his achievement, Azer headed the construction of the tunnel beneath Berlin’s Tiergarten. nIn 2006, Azer received one of Berlin’s most respected distinctions — the Merit of the State of Berlin — for outstanding service to the state. Azer graduated from the Faculty of Engineering from Ain Shams University, before relocating to Germany to study civil engineering in 1973.
343. Ahdaf Soueif Ahdaf Soueifs latest book documents the events that took place in Tahrir Square last year.
349. Tarek Hassan Amer Tarek Amer heads up by far the largest of Egypts banks.
366. Nawal Al Saadawi Feminist and author Nawal Al Saadawi was active during last years revolution, despite being aged 80.
372. Zahi Hawwas A modern-day Indiana Jones, Zahi Hawwas is a regular fixture at Egypts archaeological digs.
374. Bahaa Taher Taher won the first International Prize for Arabic Fiction in 2008, with Sunset Oasis.
379. Ahmed Mansour Mansour made his name by leading the only team to report from the battle of Fallujah during 2004.
388. Leila Ahmed Feminist Leila Ahmed is the first womens studies professor at Harvard Divinity School.