Sunday, February 19, 2012

Royal Profile: Prince Friso of The Netherlands

Prince Who?
You mean that prince who was nearly killed by an avalanche this week in Austria?
Yes. And no.
I'm talking about the second son of Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands. Younger brother of Prince Williem-Alexander.
Oh. Right. Him. Yeah.
Anyway-Since he's been in the news A LOT recently due to his accident, I thought for my own curiosity (since I don't know much about the Dutch Royals) and yours, I'd do a Royal Profile of Prince Friso. So here you go!

His Royal Highness Prince Johan Friso Bernhard Christiaan David of Orange-Nassau, Count of Orange-Nassau, Jonkheer van Amsberg  was born 25 September 1968, the second son of then Princess Beatrix of The Netherlands and her husband Claus van Amsberg, who was a German diplomat. His godparents are King Harald V of Norway, Johan Christian Baron von Jenisch, J.H. van Roijen, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands and Christina von Amsberg. He has one elder brother,Willem-Alexander, Prince of Orange and one younger brother, Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands.

He earned a degree in Mechanical engineering from University of California, Berklee in 1988. While there, he joined the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. From 1988-1994, he studied (and obtained) an engineer's degree in aeronautical engineering at Delft University of Technology. He also obtained a MSc degree in economics from Erasmus University Rotterdam, where he also took courses in Dutch Law.

He spent a year (1995-1996) at the Amsterdam branch of the international management consultancy McKinsey. He then moved on to work for Goldman Sachs International in London as Vice President from 1998-2003. After that, he became part-time co-president of TNO Space in Delft in 2004. In 2006, he became Managing Director in the London office of the private investment and advisory firm Wolfensohn & Co. He is a co-founder of the MRI Centre in Amsterdam and is also a founding shareholder of Wizzair, the largest low-cost airline in Eastern Europe. Prince Friso is honorary chairman of the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development (a position he holds together with his younger brother Prince Constantijn). The Prince also serves as a director and supervisory director of various companies. Presently, he is working as CFO for a uranium enrichment company called URENCO.

He married Mabel Wisse Smit on 24 April 2004. Because he did not seek Parliament's approval before marrying, he lost his claims to the throne, and his spot in the Royal House. He nor his children from this union are in line for the Dutch throne. Considering his older brother, and his mother's heir-apparent, has three daughters, it was highly unlikely that he would ever become King of The Netherlands anyway. He and Princess Mabel have two daughters:
  • Countess Emma Luanna Ninette Sophie,  Jonkvrouwe van Amsberg, who was born in London on 26 March 2005.
  • Countess Joanna Zaria Nicoline Milou,  Jonkvrouwe van Amsberg, who was born in London on 18 June 2006
During the family's annual skiing holiday last week, he was caught in an avalanche. His condition is said to be critical but stable. Keep it here for updates on his condition.

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