In 2011 Aujan announced a colossal deal to sell a minority stake in his firm to Coca Cola for a sliver under $1bn. Not content with leading the Gulf’s biggest privately owned beverage company, Aujan Industries, the chairman of the firm has been aggressively growing his offerings to different markets. Aujan’s juice brand, Rani, is Iran’s best-selling beverage and is planning to add to its three factories by putting a facility in Iraq, politics permitting.
In 2008, Aujan Industries nailed a target to deliver $500m in revenue 12 months ahead of its five-year schedule. The firm has tripled its sales since 2004 and is on track to double them again by 2014. Vimto, just one of its brands, has been a leading fixture on Gulf dining tables.
The Emirates-based Gargash clan is well known in the business world. In the automobile sector, the Gargash family is the sole agent for Mercedes Benz in Dubai through Gargash Enterprises, whilst elsewhere, it is also involved in electronics, real estate, insurance, industrial development and construction. Founded in the last decade of the 19th century, the firm, which was built on the back of Abdul Gafour and his nephews, quickly emerged from a small body led by the late Ali Haji Abdulla Awazi Gargash, to one of the region’s leading trading houses today. Shehab Gargash has been particularly successful running Daman Investments, founded in 2000.
Gargash received his college education in the US, earning an MBA in International Business (1988) and a BBA in Marketing (1987), both from the George Washington University in Washington, DC.