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About the waqif (the person making the endowment)

Sheikh Saleh Abdulaziz Alrajhi, May Allah have mercy on him.

1-      Biography, early life and education

1-1. Biography

Born in 1433 AH- 1926 AD, Sheikh Saleh bin Abdulaziz bin Saleh ibn Suleiman ibn Mohammed ibn Nasser Alrajhi, the real founder of Al Rajhi brand name economically, socially , and historically,  May Allah have mercy on him, in Bakiriyah, Qasseem, KSA. After his father, Sheikh Abdulaziz Al-Rajhi had moved to Riyadh in 1350 AH -1931 AD, Sheikh Saleh began to learn the Quran and its sciences, and dedicated his life to scholarship in Riyadh where myriad of scholarly circles and business opportunities could be pursued there.


When he turned 13, sheikh Saleh, May Allah have mercy on him, learnt the Qur'an by heart. He then started to frequent the study circles, particularly those run by His Eminence Sheikh Mohammed ibn Ibrahim Alsheikh, the then Mufti of the Kingdom, Sheikh Abdullatif ibn Ibrahim Alsheikh, and sheikh Mohammed Alameen Alshanqeeti, May Allah have mercy on them all.



Sheikh Saleh Alrajhi, May Allah have mercy on him, was well-known for good manners, wisdom and generosity. His house was home for his relatives and acquaintance visiting Riyadh. Despite poverty at the beginning of his life, the qualities he attained during his upbringing had a great impact on him to keep to hospitality. He always receives guests in his house, never sends back any one in need, and gives of what he has gifts and charity. We can say that the secret of his life lies in his love to benefit other members of his family, his relatives, his friends, his colleagues, and everyone. He was well-known for giving charity, patience, modesty, asceticism as attested to by those who know or met him.


2-Beginning of his business

He, May Allah have mercy on him, was self-made, diligent and perseverant. In the beginning of his life he assumed simple jobs. As a child he worked as a "porter" in the market. Having collected an amount of money, he started to sell locks and keys and (haberdashery). When he turned sixteen he ran his business using a bastah (i.e. a spread sheet where hawkers sell their goods) for money exchange in Safat in front of the Grand Mosque in Riyadh. When his business in money exchange started to grow he bought a chest for currency instead of the Basta. The chest became a shop in 1366 AH - 1947 AD., and later a company for Exchange in which he engaged his brothers Abdullah Suleiman and Mohammed. This company later became one of the largest international banks.



3- Investments

With the growth of construction, agriculture, industry and economy, Sheikh Saleh tried to diversify the sources of his income. He, therefore, worked in many areas that contributed to the evolution of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the late twentieth century. His activities expanded and included gold trade (he was one of the first gold trader between Saudi Arabia and Kuwait) real estate, industry and agriculture. With the expansion and development of his business, he assumed several positions in the companies and institutions that he founded or participated in. The most important of which are the following:

- Managing Director, Electricity Company of Central Region, a joint-stock company .

- Member, founder and chairman of the Saudi Cement Company,  a joint-stock company founded in 1955.

- Member, founder and chairman of the National Gypsum Company, a joint-stock company founded in 1959.

- Member, founder and chairman of Yamama Cement Company, a joint stock company founded in 1961.

- Member, founder and chairman of the Saudi Ceramics Company, a joint-stock company founded in 1977.

- Member, founder and chairman of Aljanoubiyah Cement Company, a joint-stock company founded in 1978.

- Member, founder and chairman of the Board of Directors of Nadec for Agricultural Development, a joint-stock company founded in 1981.

- Member, founder and chairman of the Board of Directors of Hail for Agricultural Development, a joint-stock company founded in 1982.

- Member, founder and chairman of the Board of Directors of Al-Rajhi Banking and Investment Corporation founded in 1987.

- Member and founder of the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry .

- Member and founder of Light Buildings Company.

- Member of the Board of the National Company for Operation and Industrial Services, Ltd (Services).

- Founder of Saleh Abdulaziz Al Rajhi for Banking .

- Member, founder and chairman of Al Rajhi Banking and Commerce.

- Founder of Saleh Abdulaziz Alrajhi and his partners, Ltd .

- Member and founder of Tabuk for Agricultural Development .

- Member and founder of the Saudi Company for sandy limestone bricks

1-      His charities

He, May Allah have mercy on him, started his charitable work in parallel with his business. He was one of the early supporters of charitable work. He participated in building hundreds of mosques and supported charities, centers for the memorization of the Qur’an, societies that help young people to marry, and societies patients’ friends. He, May Allah have mercy on him, would go by himself to villages and hamlets in search for the poor and the needy to support and help them. He, May Allah have mercy on him, established a big endowment foundation whose assets exceeded several billions (Alrajhi Endowment of Saleh Abdulaziz Al Rajhi ). He dedicated its revenues for the different kinds of charities. This Alrajhi Endowment spent and is still spending hundreds of millions on projects and programs related to da’wah, education, health and social services.


5- Some of his famous words

- Islam is the right path to success in all of our business and the problems facing the world today result from ignoring Islam as a way of life.

- I have never spent a million in zakat without having two from Allah .

- I have no desire in this world along with its pleasures, I only wish to live a simple life at my home with my children .

- An employee who offers a work opportunity to another is better than a farmer in his farm .

- Experience is better than specialization; scholarship cannot be utilized without experience. Through experience we can attain knowledge. Or, the best way is to combine both knowledge and experience.


6- Illness

On his way back from a business trip near the cement factory of Yamamah in Riyadh Sheikh Saleh Alrajhi had a traffic accident and got some injuries. He entered the intensive care and had a surgery to replace his thigh arteries. After a while, he experienced some physical problems, therefore, he was sent to America for medical treatment, but his health did not improve. Having returned to Riyadh, doctors advised him to rest. He remained under medical care for a while, then he suffered from a stroke that took him to bed. They made a small makeshift hospital in his palace to look after him until he died, May Allah have mercy on him, after suffering from his illness for a long time.


7- Death

He, May Allah have mercy on him, died on Saturday, 9th Rabee’ I, 1432 - 12/2/2011, at 3:00 p.m. after a long struggle with illness. Funeral prayers was performed upon his body in Rajhi Mosque, Riyadh, on Sunday 3/10/1432 after Asr Prayer .


8- Sayings about him




heikh Abdulaziz Almusnad, May Allah have mercy on him:

"He, May Allah have mercy on him, was very nice and nothing would annoy him while travelling. He was so modest and fully reliant on Allah in all his affairs. His memory would not miss anything; once he saw you, he would memorize your name and telephone number without taking a note. He was such a smart person utilizing his intelligence on the goodness and Allah’s obedience”.


8-2. Sheikh Ibrahim ibn Saleh Alkhudairi:

“He was a man of faith, purity and sincerity in buying and selling, as well as of good manners in dealing with others. He had the ability to manage huge funds and large companies”.




heikh Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah Alrajhi,  a professor at the University of Imam Muhammad ibn Saud:

“I attest that he loves to do what is good and gives in chari


8-4. Shaykh Dr. Abdulrahman Alluwihak, Imam of Saleh Alrajhi Mosque:

“Whoever knows him loves him”.


-5. HE

Dr. Abdulrahman Al Alsheikh, former Minister of Agriculture:

“One of the most prominent characteristics of Sheikh Saleh, May Allah have mercy on him, is simplicity and unpretentiousness. He was exceptional in his dealings and relationships and was self-made. He had clarity of vision from the beginning, identifying his goal and choosing the appropriate means to achieve it. He had persistence for success, a realistic vision and integrity. Above all, he was vigorous and punctual”.


8-6. HE Sheikh Mohammed ibn Ibrahim Alsubaie, a businessman

He, May Allah have mercy on him, was a wise man having the qualities of manliness and diligence. His piety and strong faith were the reason behind his success and his brothers. He was really kind when he selling or buy .ing


. H


Sheikh Thunayan Alfahd Thunayyan, a businessman

“Those who wrote to describe the kindness of sheikh Saleh did not exaggerate”.



HE Sheikh Hamad ibn Abdulaziz Aljumaih, a businessman

“He was one of the men known for their righteousness, obedience and good character. He used to add a brush of happiness and fun in meetings because of his spontaneousness, intuitiveness, and self-dependence. His life experiences were rich and f




9. Mr Abdulrahman Aljeraissy, a businessman

He was always kind, sincere in his dealings with others, and modest as he never liked bragging, extravagance, or pride. He was a ideal businessman who is honest and trustworthy with himself and his Lord. I think he was one of the men who should be cherished in Saudi Arabia.




Sheikh Abdulaziz Alhamdan, abusinessman

He was undoubtedly the real founder of Al Rajhi brand name.




ibn Abdulrahman Alrashed, a businessman

Merchants and wealthy people should follow the example of Sheikh Saleh bin Abdulaziz Alrajhi

8-12. Sheikh Mohammed Habib, a businessman

He was a generous man; he regards anything he gives us a manifestation of the good .

8-13. Sheikh Mohammed ibn Abdulrahman Alajlan, a businessman

He was kind in his dealings, benevolent to others.

8-14. Sheikh Mohammed ibn Saleh Aldohan, a businessman

He was  a man of highly good manner, beloved by all people .

8-15. Sheikh Abdullah ibn Nasser Alrajhi, a relative of Sheikh Sale


Sheikh Saleh was widely well-known and he had a good profile known to everyone.

8-16. Ibrahim ibn Abdullah Alrajhi, a relative of Sheikh Saleh

His life was full of bright approaches and venerable activities.



-17. Sheikh Abdulaziz Hagbani, one of the oldest friends of Sheikh Saleh

He was a unique person amongst his own clan and community


8-18. Abdullah ibn Saad ibn Abdullah Alhussein, a friend of Sheikh Saleh

His was self-made and had great and humanly activiti


8-19. Engineer Haitham Ghazal, an architect


h Saleh ibn Abdulaziz Alrajhi is like a school of morals and actions.





eh Abdulaziz Alrajhi: A biogra



l-Iqtisadiyah Newspaper, Issue 6334

Al Jazeera Newspaper, Issue 3076