Whether it’s projects, pipes or Pepsi, the Saudi family seems to have a hand in most industries. Based in Jeddah, they are associated with a plethora of business sectors, including automobiles, luxury cosmetics and watches, real estate and electronics. As regional entrepreneurs, they also maintain a strong presence in Morocco, Yemen, Algeria and the UAE. Founded in 1923, the Ahmed Salem Bugshan Group (referred to as ASB) started as a steel manufacturer.
Since then it has developed into a huge conglomerate by establishing alliances, dealerships and licence agreements with leading global brands. In Saudi Arabia, ASB companies hold sole distribution rights for Bridgestone tyres, Nivea, and Christian Dior perfumes. With the opening of a Canadian curriculum school in 2009 in Saudi Arabia, education can be added to the group’s ever growing portfolio.
Originally founded by Sheikh Abdel Hadi Abdullah Al Qahtani in the 1940s as a wholesaler and supplier of food products and materials, the Abdel Hadi Abdullah Al Qahtani Group of Companies has been expanded to cover various sectors and considered to be one of the largest and most reputable privately owned companies in Saudi Arabia with excellent relationships in both government and commercial sectors. Its chairman, Tareq Abdel Hadi Al Qahtani, has grown and diversified the company into supplying other industries including petrochemicals and the oil and gas sectors.
As the need grew for local manufacturing and local products, the group diversified its activities in the 1950s to include manufacturing, contracting and services. Other sectors targeted by the group include insurance, travel, tourism, transportation and custom clearance. In the 1970s, in a bid to diversify its investment portfolio outside its headquarters in Dammam, the group established an office in Texas, USA, and it has subsequently established other offices in Europe and other major international locations.