He is a personal friend of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, but is viewed as a political moderate by Lebanon's opposition.
Mr. Mikati is no stranger to Lebanese politics, having served as transport and public works minister for six years between 1998 and 2004.
The 49-year-old Sunni Muslim was raised in the northern port city of Tripoli and studied at the American University in Beirut, before pursuing advanced business degrees in Paris and the United States. He made his fortune in the telecommunications industry.
Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.