Jacob Safra

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Jacob Safra
Born Jacob Elie Safra
Aleppo, Syria
Died 27 May 1963
São Paulo, Brazil
Occupation Banker
Spouse(s) Esther Safra
Children Elie Safra
Edmond Safra
Joseph Safra
Moise Safra

Jacob Safra (Arabic: يعقوب صفرا‎‎) (1891 - 27 May 1963) was a Sephardi Jewish banker.[1][2][3] The Safras were bankers and gold traders engaged in the financing of trade between Aleppo, Istanbul and Alexandria.[4]


When the Ottoman Empire fell apart, Jacob Safra, the former partner in Safra Freres, set up a separate banking business under his own name in Beirut in the year 1920.[citation needed] With its base in the Lebanon, the Jacob E. Safra Bank became the bank of choice for many of Syria's and Lebanon's rich Sephardic Jewish families, who trusted the Safras to manage their business and personal financial interests with care and discretion.[citation needed] In 1952, he moved to Brazil with his four sons: Elie, Edmond, Joseph and Moise.[citation needed] They founded a Brazilian financial institution in 1955. However, in 1920 he founded Beirut, Lebanon, Banque de Credit National, one of the five oldest banks in Lebanon.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Safra married his cousin, Esther.[citation needed] They had four sons: Elie, Edmond, Joseph, and Moise; and four daughters: Evelyn, Gabi, Arlette, and Ughette.[5] Safra Square in Jerusalem is named in honor of him and his wife.[6]


  1. ^ Romero, Simon (1999-12-08). "INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS; The Safras of Brazil: Banking, Faith and Security". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-03-22. 
  2. ^ Zenner, Walter P. (2000). A Global Community: The Jews from Aleppo, Syria. Wayne State University Press. p. 102. ISBN 0-8143-2791-5. 
  3. ^ "Celebrities in Switzerland: Edmond Safra Biography"
  4. ^ "Edmond J. Safra". Retrieved 2008-03-22. 
  5. ^ Veja: "Final trágico - Um dos maiores banqueiros do mundo, Edmond Safra morre asfixiado num assalto" by Eliana Simonetti August 12, 1999 (in Portuguese) | "Caou-se com uma prima, Esther, e teve oito filhos: quatro homens, Elie, Edmond, Joseph e Moise, e quatro mulheres, uma delas, Evelyn, mãe do antigo dono do banco Excel Econômico, brasileiro, Ezequiel Nasser. As outras três são Gabi, Arlette e Ughette."
  6. ^ Safra Square outside Jerusalem City Hall on YouTube