Saudi government said to take control of Binladin Group
The Saudi government is taking managerial control of Saudi Binladin Group and looking into a potential transfer of some of the construction giant’s assets to the state, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing sources familiar with the matter.
The move is aimed at ensuring the company can continue to serve the government’s development plans, the sources said.
The contractor’s chairman Bakr Bin Laden and other family members were detained in a sweeping anti-corruption purge in the Kingdom in November. Dozens of other top officials, businessmen, and royal family members, including the billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, were also arrested for misuse of public funds.
Since the detention of Bin Laden family members in the probe, the Saudi Ministry of Finance has formed a five-member committee, which includes three government representatives, in order to oversee the group’s business and handle relations with suppliers and contractors, the sources said.
The Saudi Binladin Group has been hit hard by a slump in the construction industry in Saudi Arabia and the GCC, after oil prices crashed in mid-2014.
The group has also been hurt by a temporary suspension from government contracts after a crane collapse killed 107 people at the Grand Mosque in Makkah in 2015. The company was forced to lay off thousands of employees subsequently.