Honorary degree for distinguished Egyptian businessman

Published: 10 May 2010

Onsi Sawiris awarded degree of Doctor of the University in recognition of his contribution to business and philanthropy.

Mr Onsi Sawiris - a leading Egyptian businessman and philanthropist. Now, a Doctor of the University of Glasgow.Mr Onsi Sawiris has been awarded an honorary degree from the University of Glasgow.

The prestigious degree was presented to Mr Sawiris on Saturday, in recognition of his contribution to business and philanthropy at a ceremony in the British Embassy, Cairo.

Principal Professor Anton Muscatelli presented the degree of Doctor of the University as part of an official three-day visit to Egypt.

Principal Muscatelli said: "We are delighted to award Onsi Sawiris an honorary degree in recognition of his outstanding success as a businessman and his commitment to education as evidenced in the work of his OCI Foundation and scholarship programmes.

"Through the Sawiris Foundation, Mr Sawiris has supported and promoted the social and economic development of his fellow Egyptians. Mr Sawiris has done much to offer the promise of a better life to many, the disadvantaged and the talented.

"We are honoured that Mr Sawiris has agreed to accept our invitation to become a Doctor of the University of Glasgow and in doing so, that we will now be able to count him among our distinguished number of honorary graduates."

Mr Sawiris added: “I am deeply honoured by this most prestigious of awards and accept it with gratitude. I hope that we continue to forge strong links with the University of Glasgow and continue to grow our joint educational exchange programs. I firmly believe that a solid education can transform the life of any aspiring human being.” Principal Professor Anton Muscatelli oversees Mr Onsi Sawiris' signing of the register making the Egyptian businessman and philanthropist a Doctor of the University of Glasgow.

Mr. Sawiris is the founding patriarch of Egypt's most famous business dynasty. The family-owned group of companies include Orascom Construction Industries (OCI), Orascom Telecom Holding (OTH) and Orascom Hotels Holding (OHD).

The three groups are publicly listed corporations with a combined market capitalization of approximately US$ 18 billion. Mr Sawiris’ three sons actively manage the three business groups, namely Nassef Sawiris (OCI), Naguib Sawiris (OTH) and Samih Sawiris (OHD).

Mr Onsi Sawiris was born in Egypt in 1930.  He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from Cairo University. Mr Sawiris also serves as a Chairman of the Board of Directors of Misr Exterior Bank, Pharaonic AIG Insurance Co, the Egyptian Scandinavian Business Association and YMCA in Cairo.

In April 2007, he was awarded the Swedish Royal Order of the Polar Star in the presence of HRH Princess Victoria of Sweden. In November 1998, Mr Sawiris was awarded L'ORDRE DE LEOPOLD from his Majesty the King of Belgium ALBERT II.

For more media information please contact Eleanor Cowie, Media Relations Officer, on 0141 330 3683 or e.cowie@admin.gla.ac.uk

First published: 10 May 2010

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