JEDDAH – Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal is eyeing three big investments in the near-term, setting a high bar for the acquisitions as he pursues returns of at least 20 percent, he told the German business daily Handelsblatt’s Tuesday edition.
"We are currently in talks over three quite big (investment) projects - one in Saudi Arabia, one in the (Arab) region and one internationally," Alwaleed told the daily.
"Our targets are very high - at least 20 to 25 percent. Other Arab investors take a different stance, they want to diversify away from oil and take lower returns of 6 to 8 into account," he added.
The prince, who has a sizeable stake in Citigroup, said he would continue to look at investments in the United States and Europe but had no plans to raise his Citigroup holding or buy into other US banks.
"We have enough," he said of the Citigroup investment.
Asked if he is eyeing Greek, Portuguese or Spanish investments, he told the paper: "We are looking around. And it is right, some things are cheap now. But they could become cheaper, the crisis is not yet over. There is no hurry."
The Arab world will also be a focus for future investments, he told the paper, noting the prospect of high returns. Alwaleed was estimated by Forbes magazine last year to have a fortune of over $19 billion. He already owns a 7 percent stake in News Corp and plans to start a cable news channel. – SG