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Dr. Nahed Taher ranked No.72 on Forbes' 100 Most Powerful Women in the World List

Dr. Nahed Taher Ranked No.72 on Forbes List of Most Powerful Women in the World 2006

For more than three years, the 39-year-old Taher was the senior economist at Saudi Arabia's National Commercial Bank, where she was the only woman among 4,000 men. Last year, she quit, tired of being in the business of making small consumer loans. "It was boring," says Taher. Tapping her extensive contacts, she entered the more lucrative field of investment banking by forming Gulf One—becoming the first woman to head a Saudi investment bank. Investors, including Gulf pension funds, have flocked to her endeavor and have committed $10 billion to finance infrastructure projects across the Middle East and India. Already lined up: Petrochemical plants in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Taher was also the unlikely face of Saudi Arabia when she headed a trade mission to the U.S. last year to drum up investment for her country. —Zina Moukheiber


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