In an extensive and exclusive interview with Forbes' Tatiana Serafin, Mohammed Al Amoudi revealed his philanthropy strategy where he is setting the standard in the Middle East and Africa.
He outlined his focus on Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia but also his commitment to CSR in his major privately held corporations as well as a general concentration on education and healthcare projects. He has an additional interest in sport as a vehicle to encourage cultural cohesion. In the interview, he gives the background to his choice of these areas of interest which owe a great deal to his own awareness that, having received support from local communities for his business projects, then that it is only right that he give something back in return.
He also made it clear that he was personally and intimately involved in decision-making about philanthropy and that he adopted a business-like approach to the business of giving. He emphasized his commitment to making philanthropic projects more socially useful by encouraging their educational component, from investment in specialist healthcare academic appointments through to helping local farmers in Ethiopia become self-sustaining.
The entire philanthropic commitment is based on leading by example so that others will follow through with commitments of their own and he has no difficulties with long time horizons on his projects, whether in business or in philanthropy. He is also committed to monitoring the projects as they unfold to ensure that they meet whatever targets are set. He revealed that he was negotiating to partner with the Gates Foundation on food sustainability and agriculture, following successful partnership arrangements with the Clinton Foundation and with the Government of Ethiopia on healthcare,
He would not reveal precise figures on giving, confirming the discretion that is usual in regional business practice, but he did hint at the method by which he calculated appropriate levels of giving by referencing back to the Muslim principle of ‘zakat’ which is similar to the historic Christian principle of tithing.
Visit the Forbes website read the full interview.