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Mr. Bader Al-Darwish, Qatari business guru and Chairman of Darwish Holding – a pioneering business conglomerate in Qatar, has been named the Businessman of the Year by Arabian Business during the Achievements Awards ceremony which was recently held at the Four Seasons hotel in Doha, Qatar.
The Arabian Business Award is a premier event in the regional business calendar, which consistently attracts and honours the biggest names in the Gulf business community. Each year, the awards celebrate the very best in business achievement, both on a corporate and individual level. The Arabian Business Achievement Awards have been hosted in Kuwait, Jordan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Previous winners have included HRH Prince Al-Waleed, King Mohammed VI of Morocco, and King Abdullah of Jordan. In 2008 HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum won a special Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to global business over the past two decades.
On the occasion, Mr Bader Al-Darwish said: “This award is an honor for the entire Darwish Holding as it is a solid testament to the fact that Darwish has been a key partner for the development and recognition of our nation on the regional and international business map. Our name has been closely linked to that of our country owing to a stellar track record with milestones that have helped raise the bar in the industry. We are now gearing up towards the launch of Qatar’s newest retail destination, Lagoona, which is really a labor of love for Darwish Holding and a culmination of the company's vision and belief over the past eight decades.”
This award is one in a series of accolades that reflects Mr Bader’s outstanding business achievements stemming, particularly, from the innovative retail concepts that he introduced to Qatar such as the newly opened Fifty One East - the largest multi-brand luxury store in the Middle East - which has also been recognized as the Best Retail Project of the Year.
In 2002, He was named "Exemplary Citizen of Qatar" by His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Emir of the State of Qatar. He was also feted with the Year 2000 "Gulf Successes Award" by His Excellency Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoom, Ruler of Dubai and decorated twice by the former Lebanese President, His Excellency General Emile Lahoud with medals for the “National Order of the Cedars of Lebanon -Grade Commander” in 2005 and “The Golden First Grade Medallion of the Lebanese Order of Merit” in 2007.
Born in 1959, Bader Abdullah Al-Darwish is the son of Late Abdullah Al-Darwish Fakhroo, a pioneering leader in the region since 1920 who, along with his brothers, Jassim and Abdul Rahman, built the One Billion Dollar Darwish Group of Companies in Qatar with interests extending throughout the Gulf. Their business operations were not only limited to shares and investments in financial institutions but also included Trading, Automobiles, Property Development, Construction and Contracting, Hotels, Travel and Tourism with properties throughout the Middle East, Europe and the USA.
Bader Abdullah Al-Darwish graduated from the U.K. with a major in Business Administration. He undertook postgraduate private courses in Finance and Marketing in the U.K. and enrolled in intensive advanced studies relating to Commercial Arbitration at "IVY" institutions in Egypt.
Mr Al-Darwish is also a member on the Board and the Executive Committee of Qatar National Bank. Over the past decade, Mr Al-Darwish held various corporate high-level positions across a number of organizations. He was the Chairman of the Committee of the International Fund for the Higher Education in Iraq formed by Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser, the Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Sciences and Community Development and UNESCO's Special Envoy for Basic and Higher Education. Mr Bader was also a Board Member of the Supreme Education Council, the Chairman of the Commercial Arbitration Center for the Gulf Cooperation Council and an active Member of the Qatari-Japanese Friendship Association. Mr Bader chaired the Italian-Qatar Joint Business Council and was a Joint Executive Director of the Qatar-British Association of Businessmen (Q.B.A.B.). Last but not least, Mr Bader was a Board Member of Qatar Futuristic Studies.
Other big winners at the Arabian Business Achievements Awards included Buthaina Al Ansari for Businesswoman of the Year; Qatar Foundation for a special CSR award; Hisham Al Mana for the Visionary of the Year; and Al Jazeera English for International Achievement.
A special award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Business’ was also given to the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup Bid Committee.
The Best Real Estate Investment Strategy of the Year award was given to Mazaya Qatar Real Estate Development; Best Logistics Company of the Year for Gulf Warehousing Company; Best Islamic Bank of the Year for QIB; Bank of the Year for Doha Bank; Retail Bank of the Year for IBQ; Financial Services of the Year for QFC; Telecom Company of the Year for Qtel; Best Real Estate Company of the Year for Ezdan Real Estate; Energy Company of the Year for RasGas; and Hospitality Company of the Year for Ritz Carlton, Doha.