24 January 2017
DAMMAM — Sheikh Adel Aujan, one of the Gulf’s most prominent and successful industrialists, has passed away, aged 70.
Sheikh Adel passed away peacefully on Sunday (Jan. 22) morning during a visit in Jeddah. His funeral was held in his home city Dammam on Monday (Jan. 23).
Sheikh Adel was the Chairman of one of the largest Middle Eastern beverages company, Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Company (formerly known as Aujan Industries), widely regarded as one of the region’s top home-grown success stories.
Over a 48-year career with the group, Sheikh Adel grew the Dammam-based business into a multi-billion-dollar drinks giant, thanks to the innovative marketing of existing brands such as Vimto and homegrown brands like Rani and Barbican.
The Saudi businessman was also the visionary behind the largest ever consumer goods partnership in the Middle East with The Coca-Cola Company creating a joint venture between the two companies entitled Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Company.
Abdulla Adel Aujan from Aujan Group Holding said: “My father’s passing is a huge loss, which will never be truly filled. He leaves an extraordinary legacy of both business and personal success, and he will be missed not just for his leadership, but for his honesty, candour and generosity.”
Tolga Sezer, Chief Executive Officer, ACCBC, said: “Sheikh Adel Aujan transformed Aujan Industries into one of the most well-respected companies not just in Saudi Arabia but around the Middle East with his great vision and business acumen. My thoughts and prayers, together with those of every employee at Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Company, go out to his family.”
The company that would eventually become Aujan Industries was founded in 1905, and was expanded into beverages when it acquired the exclusive rights to distribute Vimto in the region in 1928.
Sheikh Adel joined the company in 1968 after studying in the US, and quickly expanded Aujan Industries’ sales and distribution networks. Over the years, he developed Vimto Cordial as the drink of choice for families in the Gulf region during the Holy Month of Ramadan.
The company’s first homegrown brand, Rani, was introduced in 1982. The fruit-juice brand has gone on to become one of the most preferred beverages in the Middle East.
Aujan Industries also sells and distributes Barbican, a non-alcoholic malt-based drink, having bought the brand outright in 2011.
As well as beverages, Aujan Group Holding also has interests in real estate and packaging materials, with investments in hotels and game reserves in the Middle East and Africa.
© The Saudi Gazette 2017