Mohammed Al Barwani was born in Oman. He has a bachelor's degree in microbiology from Miami University, Ohio, US, and a master's degree in petroleum engineering from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, and received an honorary PhD from the same university, yet styles himself as "Dr. Mohammed Al Barwani". According to Bloomberg, Barwani has a "Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1981".
Al Barwani founded MB Holding in 1982 to provide oilfield services. MB expanded into oil and gas exploration and production, and then engineering services and mining.
Al Barwani received an honorary doctorate from Heriot-Watt University in 2010.
As of May 2016, Forbes estimated his net worth at US$1.01 billion.