Mohammed Ibrahim (businessman)
Ibrahim at the 2007 World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town
3 May 1946 |
|Residence||Monte Carlo, Monaco|
|Alma mater||Alexandria University
University of Bradford
University of Birmingham
|Net worth||US$1.1 billion|
|Spouse(s)||Hania Morsi Fadl (divorced)|
|Children||3, including Hadeel Ibrahim|
Mohammed "Mo" Ibrahim (Arabic: محمد إبراهيم; born 3 May 1946) is a Sudanese-British billionaire businessman. He worked for several telecommunications companies, before founding Celtel, which when sold had over 24 million mobile phone subscribers in 14 African countries. After selling Celtel in 2005 for $3.4 billion, he set up the Mo Ibrahim Foundation to encourage better governance in Africa, as well as creating the Mo Ibrahim Index, to evaluate nations' performance. He is also a member of the Africa regional advisory board of London Business School.
In 2007 he initiated the Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, which awards a $5 million initial payment, and a $200,000 annual payment for life to African heads of state who deliver security, health, education and economic development to their constituents and democratically transfer power to their successors. Ibrahim has pledged to give at least half of his wealth to charity by joining The Giving Pledge.
Early life and education
He was born on 3 May 1946 in northern Sudan, of Nubian descent, the second of five children, four of whom were boys. His family moved to Alexandria, Egypt when he was young, and father Fathi was employed there by a cotton company, and his mother Aida was very keen that they all get a good education.
Ibrahim earned a bachelor's degree from Alexandria University in electrical engineering. He returned to Sudan and started working for the telephone company, Sudan Telecom. He moved to England and earned a master's degree from the University of Bradford in Electronics and Electrical Engineering, and a PhD from the University of Birmingham in Mobile Communications.
Ibrahim is credited with "transforming a continent" and is said to be the "most powerful black man in Britain".
During the early 1980s Ibrahim taught undergraduate telecommunication courses at Thames Polytechnic later to become University of Greenwich.
In 1989 he founded MSI, a consultancy and software company, which in 2000 was bought by the Marconi Company. Originally the company was helping the cellular industry designing their networks, before they shifted their focus to mobile phones in the late 1990s. MSI had 800 employees, who owned approximately 30% of the stock at the point of its sale; Ibrahim says he gave employees stock as a form of bonus.
In 1998, MSI spun off MSI-Cellular Investments, later renamed Celtel, as a mobile phone operator in Africa.
After some years, when Celtel needed long term source of capital, they considered to do an IPO on a reputable stock exchange, for instance the London Stock Exchange. When it became public that they considered a public offering, they received a lot alternative offers. Many wanted to buy the company, and Ibrahim and his team decided to sell Celtel in 2004 to Kuwait-based Mobile Telecommunication Company (now Zain). 
Mo Ibrahim Foundation
In 2006 Ibrahim created the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, founded in London. In 2007, the Foundation inaugurated the Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, with the first recipient former president Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique.
The Foundation publishes the Ibrahim Index of African Governance, ranking the performance of all 54 African countries. Until 2009, the Index took into account only the 48 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Foundation offers scholarships at University of Birmingham, SOAS, and London Business School. These scholarships are on topics of International Development at University of Birmingham, Governance of Development in Africa at SOAS, and an MBA at London Business School. The scholarships are initiated for African students, both master students and postgraduates.
Marriage and family
In 1973, Ibrahim married Hania Morsi Fadl, an Alexandria University graduate from the year above him, whom he had known since childhood. They are now divorced, and Fadli is a Sudanese-born British radiologist, running the only breast cancer clinic in Sudan.
They have a daughter, Hadeel Ibrahim, who is executive director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, vice chair of the Africa Centre in New York, and aboard member of the Clinton Foundation; and two sons Hosh and Sami Ibrahim.
Ibrahim resides in Monaco.
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- Mullins, John; Komisar, Randy (2009). Getting to Plan B: Breaking Through to a Better Business Model. Harvard Business Press. p. 193.
- "Interview with Mo Ibrahim, founder and former Chairman of Celtel". Jeune Afrique, via Celtel.com. Groupe Jeune Afrique. Archived from the original on 21 October 2007. Retrieved 29 September 2007.
- Ibrahim, Mo (2012). "Celtel's Founder on Building a Business on the World's Poorest Continent". Harvard Business Review. 90: 41–44.
-  Archived 14 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Mozambique ex-leader wins prize". BBC News. 22 October 2007. Retrieved 22 October 2007.
- "Ibrahim Scholarships". Mo Ibrahim Foundation. 2016-12-04.
- "Meet the woman who runs the only breast cancer clinic in Sudan". independent.co.uk. 4 February 2016. Retrieved 13 November 2017.
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