The old generation of Syrian oligarchs, embodied by Rami Makhlouf and Fares Al Shibahi, are gradually losing control over Syrian business as newcomers like Samer Foz, Nader Kalai, Nazir Jamal Eddine and Houssam Qaterji come to greater prominence. A group of businesspeople close to first lady Asma Al Assad are also vying for a place at the table, led by Tarif Akhras and Mohammed Al Dabbagh, who are in turn up against Mohammed Hamcho, Ghassan Ali Bilal and others loyal to Bashar Al Assad's brother Mahar Al Assad.
Real estate tycoons have pride of place in the reconstruction model that is emerging, which some compare to Beirut's Solidere of the 1990s. The president's office is anxious to entrust these projects to loyal businessmen. The most striking example is the Marota City project, which was recently exposed to US sanctions under the recent Caesar Act. This massive project will involve the construction of dozens of homes, shops and luxury hotels in south-western Damascus, under the watchful eye of the governor of Damascus, Adel Anwar al Obadi, who is close to the president. Some of Damascus' leading businessmen have come together to create the company that will oversee the project, Damascus Cham Holding, which was founded by the governorate of Damascus.