Samih Sawiris, born in Cairo, Egypt, the middle of the three sons of Onsi Sawiris, is the Chairman of Orascom Development Holding (ODH.SW),a Swiss- incorporated company listed on the Swiss Stock Exchange (SIX).
He received his Diploma in Economic Engineering from the Technical University of Berlin.
Orascom Development is a leading developer of fully integrated destinations that include hotels, private villas and apartments, leisure facilities such as golf courses, marinas and supporting infrastructure. Orascom Development’s diversified portfolio of destinations is spread over nine jurisdictions (Switzerland, Egypt, Montenegro, England, Mauritius, Oman, UAE, Jordan and Morocco).
The Group currently owns 35 hotels, with 8,135 guestrooms and over 1,000 rooms under development in the different countries. ODH operates eight destinations: Andermatt in Switzerland; El Gouna, Taba Heights, Haram City and Makadi in Egypt; The Cove in the United Arab Emirates; Jebel Sifah and Salalah Beach in Oman. In addition, Samih is a member of Sawiris Foundation which was founded in April 2001, with an endowment from the Sawiris family, and is dedicated to social development.
Over the years, the Andermatt project has attracted strong media interest. For many years, Andermatt was a well-kept secret, an alpine destination known only to those with inside connections. Owning a piece of it was merely a dream. However, in 2005, Andermatt entered a new, momentous stage in its history. In response to the withdrawal of the residential Swiss Army (which had been based in Andermatt since 1895) the Swiss Government decided to open up the region for development. Therefore, it turned to the respected Sawiris for advice on how to develop the area for tourism. Sawiris was so inspired by the beauty of the Urseren Valley that he took on the development as his own project.
“When I was invited to consult for the Andermatt team, I didn't expect to come across a long-forgotten destination with such potential”, explains Sawiris. “The prospect of transforming this village into one of the Alps' hidden gems is incredibly exciting.”