Mohamed Al-Fayed dies at age 94

Written by Henrik Rothen

Sep.01 - 2023 11:07 PM CET

Mohamed Al-Fayed dies at age 94.

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Mohamed Al-Fayed, the Egyptian-born self-made billionaire, has died at 94.

His passing comes nearly 26 years after the devastating car crash in Paris that took the lives of his eldest son, Dodi, and Diana, Princess of Wales. Al-Fayed was originally from Alexandria, Egypt, where he was the son of a schoolteacher.

He first made his mark in the business world in Egypt with a shipping venture and later served as an adviser to the Sultan of Brunei in 1966.

Upon moving to the UK in the 1970s, Al-Fayed briefly joined the board of mining conglomerate Lonrho. In 1979, he and his brother Ali acquired the Paris Ritz Hotel.

Their business pursuits continued to escalate when, in 1985, they successfully acquired Harrods department store in Knightsbridge for approximately $840 million (converted from £615 million). Al-Fayed maintained ownership until 2010 when he sold it to Qatar Holding.

In the sports arena, Al-Fayed acquired Fulham Football Club in 1997 for about $8.5 million (converted from £6.25 million).

He even invited pop legend Michael Jackson to a game. The club was eventually sold to Shahid Khan in 2013. Al-Fayed was also implicated in the 1994 cash-for-questions political scandal, which led to the resignation of multiple MPs.

He is survived by his wife, Finnish socialite and former model Heini Wathén, and their four children: Jasmine, Karim, Camilla, and Omar.