Who Is Yasir Al-Rumayyan? - LIV Golf Chairman And Public Investment Fund Governor

The governor of the Saudi Public Investment Fund is poised for a seat at the top table in the game, but what's his background?

Yasir Al-Rumayyan at the 2022 match between Newcastle United and Leicester City
Yasir Al-Rumayyan will be the chairman of the new entity overseeing the PGA Tour, LIV Golf and DP World Tour
(Image credit: Getty Images)

News of the historic golf merger has left many in the game shocked. In fact, such was the secrecy of the move that even LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman, who is not expected to be part of golf's future, only found out about it minutes before the rest of the world.

Norman has been the face of LIV Golf since its inception, but in the background throughout that time has been the governor of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) that bankrolls the circuit, Yasir Al-Rumayyan.

In the statement that detailed how the PIF, the PGA Tour and DP World Tour will merge to form a new entity was confirmation that Al-Rumayyan will be a major player in the new set up when he becomes chairman. But who exactly is he?

Yasir Al-Rumayyan is a 53-year-old businessman and governor of the PIF. The PIF is one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, with assets reportedly around $650bn.

It has business interests throughout the world, including stakes in Uber, Meta, Microsoft, Boeing and Disney. In 2021, it also led a consortium to takeover English Premier League soccer club Newcastle United, with Al-Rumayyan becoming its chairman.

The businessman is also the chairman of the Saudi Arabian Oil Group, or Saudi Aramco, a company worth over $2tn and which sponsors the LET’s Aramco Team Series and Aramco Saudi Ladies International. He’s also a former board member of Tesla and Softbank.

Yasir Al-Rumayyan in the pro-am before the 2022 LIV Golf Chicago tournament

Away from his business interests, Yasir Al-Rumayyan is a keen golfer

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Al-Rumayyan is a banker by profession, but his rise to prominence accelerated after he began advising the Saudi government eight years ago. He gained his current standing on the PIF, answerable to its chairman His Royal Highness Mohammad bin Salman Al-Saud, in 2019.

Now, Al-Rumayyan will have a huge say in the direction of the game. Indeed, the statement announcing the merger said: “Going forward, PIF will have the exclusive right to further invest in the new entity, including a right of first refusal on any capital that may be invested in the new entity, including into the PGA Tour, LIV Golf and DP World Tour.”

Money, and lots of it, appears to be about to pour into the game, too, after Al-Rumayyan confirmed on CNBC that the idea of “potentially billions of dollars being invested from the PIF” was “correct”.

None of this will do anything to dampen suggestions that, since branching out into high-profile sports ventures under Al-Rumayyan’s watch, the PIF is attempting to sportswash Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.

With Al-Rumayyan set to pull many of the game’s financial strings from now on, though, it appears he’s poised to move it in a direction that even its leading figures have yet to fathom.

Yasir Al-Rumayyan: Key Facts

  • Born in Buraidah, Saudi Arabia, Yasir Al-Rumayyan is a 53-year-old businessman
  • He studied accounting at King Faisal University in Al-Hofuf
  • He is a banker by profession and a keen golf fan
  • Al-Rumayyan began advising the Saudi government in 2015
  • He became governor of the PIF in 2019, with a remit from Saudi’s crown prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, to diversify from oil
  • In 2021, under Al-Rumayyan, the PIF led a takeover of Newcastle United
  • The year after, PIF-funded LIV Golf launched with an eight-tournament Series
  • Al-Rumayyan will become chairman of the new entity overseeing the PGA Tour, LIV Golf and the DP World Tour, with Jay Monahan as its CEO
Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.