Nemir Kirdar

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Nemir A. Kirdar
OccupationInvestcorp, Chairman and CEO
Spouse(s)Nada Kirdar
ChildrenRena Kirdar Sindi, Serra Kirdar

Nemir A. Kirdar is an Iraqi businessman and financier. He was the founding CEO of Investcorp, a private equity investment group operating out of New York City, London and Bahrain. After serving 23 years as CEO of Investcorp, Kirdar retired from the position in 2015 and became the company's Chairman.[1] He lives in London.


Kirdar began his banking career in New York in 1969. Following two years of credit training, he worked in South East Asia and Japan for Allied Bank International. In 1974, he joined Chase Manhattan Bank in New York City, as vice president. Between 1976 and 1981, Kirdar worked in the Persian Gulf overseeing and directing Chase’s banking network in the region.

In 1982, he founded Investcorp, a firm specializing in global investment offerings including private equity, hedge funds, real estate, technology investments and Persian Gulf growth capital.

Early life[edit]

Kirdar was born in Kirkuk, Iraq, to a Turkmen family prominent in the politics of the late Ottoman Empire and interwar Iraq. After a military coup overthrew the Iraqi monarchy in 1958, Kirdar fled to the United States to study. During his escape from Iraq in 1958, he reportedly hid in a rolled-up carpet in the back of a truck.[2] He returned to Iraq in 1960 but soon after the Baathist coup, which produced the regime of Saddam Hussein, Kirdar left the country again.[3]

Kirdar graduated from the University of the Pacific in California with a degree in economics. He also holds an MBA from Fordham University in New York, and completed Harvard Business School’s senior management program.

Academic Awards[edit]

Kirdar has received an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Fordham University of New York, Georgetown University in Washington DC; in laws from the University of the Pacific, California; and in economics from Richmond, The American International University in London.[4]

Kirdar is an honorary Fellow of St Antony’s College, Oxford University; Member of the United Nations Investments Committee, NYC; Member of the Board of Trustees, Brookings Institution, Washington DC; Member of the Board of Trustees, Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship, Philadelphia, PA; Member of the Advisory Board, School of International & Public Affairs, Columbia University, NYC; Founding member of the International Business Council, World Economic Forum, Geneva; Member of the Chatham House Panel of Senior Advisers, UK; Member of the International Council of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; Member of the Council for Arab & International Relations, Kuwait; Member of the Board of Trustees, Silatech, Doha, Qatar

Wealth, Villa Serenda[edit]

Kirdar is estimated to have a net worth of over one billion US dollars.[5] Kirdar ranked 206 in the British Rich List 2005.[6] He also ranked #26 on the world's most influential Arabs 2009 list.[7]

Kirdar owns Villa Serenada in Cap d'Antibes on the Cote d'Azur in the south of France; guests at Villa Serenada have included George H. W. Bush and his wife Barbara, and Nicholas Soames.[8] Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles reportedly stayed at the villa in September 2000.[9]


  1. ^
  2. ^ The Sunday Times Rich List
  3. ^ The power hundred list 2007, 61# Nemir Kirdar
  4. ^ The world's most influential Arabs 2009 list, 26# Nemir Kirdar
  5. ^ The Wall Street Journal: New Law Makes Escape Tougher For Tax Exiles
  6. ^ The Sunday Times Rich List
  7. ^ The world's most influential Arabs 2009 list, 26# Nemir Kirdar
  8. ^ Barbara Bush (12 October 2004). Reflections: Life After the White House. Simon and Schuster. pp. 282–. ISBN 978-0-7432-5582-0.
  9. ^ Caroline Graham (2005). Camilla and Charles: The Love Story. John Blake. ISBN 978-1-84454-167-6.

Further reading[edit]

Kirdar, Nemir (2013). Need, Respect, Trust: A Memoir. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. ISBN 9780297868583.