Mohamed Al Fayed, former Harrods owner whose son Dodi was killed alongside Diana, Princess of Wales in car crash, has died at age 94.
Born in Egypt, he built a business empire in the Middle East before moving to the United Kingdom (UK) in the 1970s.
But he never realised his ambition to get a passport for his adopted country.
After his eldest son Dodi was killed in a car crash alongside Princess Diana, Al Fayed spent years questioning the circumstances surrounding their deaths.
He had remained largely out of the public limelight in the past decade, living in his Surrey mansion with his wife Heini.
Al Fayed was also the former owner of Fulham Football Club.
The club said tonight that it was “incredibly saddened to learn” of his death.
“We owe Mohamed a debt of gratitude for what he did for our club, and our thoughts now are with his family and friends at this sombre time,” it said in a statement.
As a young man living in Alexandria, Al Fayed’s break came after he met his first wife, Samira Khashoggi, the sister of Saudi millionaire arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi – who employed him in his Saudi Arabian import business.
The role helped him forge new connections in Egypt, and although the marriage lasted little more than two years, Al Fayed went on to launch his own a shipping business.
In 1966, he became an adviser to one of the world’s richest men, the Sultan of Brunei.
Having built up considerable wealth and experience, he moved to Britain in 1974.
Five years later, eager to secure his standing, specifically among the higher echelons of British society, he bought the iconic Paris Ritz hotel with his brother Ali for £20m.
They went on to take over Harrods in 1985 for £615m, following a vicious bidding war with mining conglomerate the Lonrho group.
Al Fayed bought Fulham Football Club in the 1990s. The team rose from third tier to Premier League under his tenure. (BBC)