On the occasion of the coronation of King Charles III, Nasser Al Arayedh, the Chairman of Al Arayedh Group Holding reflects on the renowned business family’s close ties with the UK.
The Kingdom of Bahrain is home to several families that are engaged in various business sectors. Among them is the Al Arayedh family, which is known for their enterprising efforts across generations that have made a lasting impact. Over time, the family has grown and diversified their activities with investments in countries across borders, including the UK.
“Our history with the UK goes a long way with members of our family not only investing and trading with businesses based in the UK, but pursuing their education in the Kingdom too. In fact, it started with my grandfather, the honourable Mansoor Al Arayedh, who used to deal with jewellers in the UK. He would be entrusted with providing them with pearls and dealt with them for diamonds and other precious stones settings for high-end jewellery,” narrates Chairman of Al Arayedh Group Holding, Nasser Al Arayedh.
His father, Mohamed Jameel Al Arayedh, pursued his education at Millfield School in the UK in 1948. “Given his pioneering nature and business roots, he then imported materials from the UK and established in Bahrain what would be the first fresh dairy factory in the Arabian Gulf region,” he says.
As for Mr. Nasser Al Arayedh, who also did his undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in the UK, his business started with the import of cleaning chemicals for commercial and industrial use, followed by the establishment of a training centre with UK-certified courses. “Currently our connection with the UK is through investments for which we have representatives in London who are responsible for long-term strategies,” he says.
The family’s various businesses have now been merged under the banner of Al Arayedh Group Holding (AAGH), which was officially formed in 2008. “We operate in several sectors including trade and investments, real estate and travel and tourism. Hence, it took us five years to structure all these family assets under this wing which manages them collectively,” he explains. “By doing so, we have been able to examine our assets in order to diversify and increase our investments.”
The company’s board consists of Mr. Al Arayedh, Deputy Chairman Maryam Al Arayedh and Director Jehan Al Arayedh, in addition to three other executives who are selected on a periodical basis. “Our primary areas of business are now real estate and investment, both local and international,” he states.
Sharing his thoughts on the UK’s business sector, he concludes: “The United Kingdom has long been known for their products, which may have changed over time but are known for their exceptional quality – a key reason for which they have maintained their global position. Furthermore, there’s no denying that the country is also a leader in the education sector. It is a rule of law for us to invest in countries where there is not only investment protection, but unique and sought-after brands. As our business continues to grow in the years to come, I look forward to continuing our dealings with the Kingdom and wish them the very best under the rule of King Charles III.”