Wissam Al Mana and Janet Jackson, Feb. 25, 2013, Milan Fashion Week (WireImage)And you thought Jermaine changing his last name to “Jacksun” was the biggest Jackson family news of the past week?
In an exclusive statement to “Entertainment Tonight,” Janet Jackson confirmed that she’s already married to Qatari businessman Wissam Al Mana. A rep for the singer has confirmed the news to omg! as well.
"The rumours regarding an extravagant wedding are simply not true,” the statement began. “Last year we were married in a quiet, private, and beautiful ceremony. Our wedding gifts to one another were contributions to our respective favourite children’s charities. We would appreciate that our privacy is respected and that we are allowed this time for celebration and joy.
With love, Wissam and Janet"
Rumors that Jackson, 46, and Al Mana, 37, were planning a spring wedding started circulating in December. The couple has been romantically linked since 2010. It’s the third marriage for the “Rhythm Nation” singer, following her marriages to James DeBarge and Rene Elizondo Jr. (her marriage to the former was later annulled). She was also in a long-term relationship with music producer Jermaine Dupri, which ended in 2009, but the couple never married.
Not much is knows about Al Mana’s personal life, but he is certainly successful in the business world. The Middle Eastern impresario helps run the Al Mana Group, a family business started by his father over 60 years ago, along with his two brothers. The retail businessman has a reported estimated net worth ranging anywhere from $200 million to over $1 billion. In 2004, he launched the Al Mana Luxury Company division, which is a shareholder in Saks Fifth Avenue’s Middle East franchises as well as in A/X Armani Exchange.
“I head the retail division [of the Qatar-based family empire, Al Mana Group],” he explained in the November 2012 issue of VMAN magazine. “I oversee new developments and I’m constantly working on interesting projects, one of them in design. I’m also pursuing an art project, and I’m involved in several charities.”
He also spoke with VMAN back then about his relationship with Ms. Jackson, saying, “I don’t date Janet Jackson. She is my girlfriend; there is a difference. She is a very special and talented woman who never ceases to amaze me.”
In December 2010, he spoke with Harper’s Bazaar Arabia more about the origins of his professional life and explained that his love of fashion was developed growing up in London.
“(London is) where I developed an early love of fashion and remember applying for a job at every fashion boutique on the Kings Road," he shared. "At 14 I finally found a weekend job at a multi-brand store. I really enjoyed it and began to acquire an insight into the world of retail that would prove crucial for my career.”
He also told Harper’s Bazaar that his betrothed love is his “dream woman.”
“I think a man’s dream woman changes as he goes through different stages in his life. I’m fortunate to be dating my dream woman now,” he explained. After noting that Jackson bought him a mint condition 1964 Lincoln Continental convertible with suicide doors as a gift, he went on to say that although it’s the “ultimate boy’s toy,” he believes that, “Greed is terrible. I think we need to learn how to be content with what we have. Money doesn’t buy happiness, nor do material things.”
We guess "That's The Way Love Goes"! Congrats to the happy couple.
More Features on Yahoo!:
- Madonna vs. Instagram: What Did the Material Girl Do to Violate the App's Terms?
- Christina Applegate Marries Martyn LeNoble
- Charlize Theron Assists Security Guard Who Suffered Seizure at Oscars