GCC Family Business

Pages 87
Tables 2
Charts 6
Price $1750

Family businesses are the mainstay of the GCC economy and account for over 90 per cent of the private sector. Traditionally involved in trading, manuf.....


Family businesses are the mainstay of the GCC economy and account for over 90 per cent of the private sector. Traditionally involved in trading, manufacturing, financial services, real estate and construction, family businesses have diversified into other sectors, over the years. The single key feature of a GCC family business is the ownership structure, which takes the form of direct and complete family control, and is characterized by a handful of senior family members influencing decision making. Liberalization in the GCC has led to stricter regulations in the capital markets, increase in competition, both domestic and foreign, and a greater need for transparency and accountability.

In this report, we look at family businesses in the context of GCC, and distinguish between the running of family and non-family businesses. The report provides an analysis of over fifty family groups in the GCC, their sector preferences, and generational success. Furthermore, we list the strengths and challenges faced by GCC family businesses, and recommend best practices for the future.


  1. Executive Summary
  2. Family Business Dynamics 
    • A Trilogy of Ownership, Business and Family
    • Family Business in the GCC
    • Inception – Growth – Maturity: Where does GCC figure? 
  3. GCC Family Business: Key Points
    • Industrial manufacturing most preferred sector
    • 1st and 2nd generations dominate family business landscape
  4. GCC Family Business: Strengths
    • Patient capital
    • Stable leadership
    • Loyalty, commitment and support of family members
    • Swift decision making
    • Lower agency costs
    • Diversified Businesses
  5. GCC Family Business: Challenges
    • Lack of legal structures that support generational transfer of assets
    • Separating Family and Business concerns
    • Maintaining control in a growing atmosphere
    • Recruit and Retain Talent
    • Shed unattractive businesses: Over-diversification
    • Access to Capital
    • Weak Corporate Governance
  6. Corporate Governance
    • Establish Corporate Governance Code
  7. GCC Family Business and Philanthropy
  8. Family Profiles
    • Yusuf Bin Ahmed Kanoo (Bahrain, 1890) 
    • Abdulla Yousif Fakhro & Sons (Bahrain, 1888) 
    • The Kharafi Group, (Kuwait, 1956) 
    • Alghanim Industries Kuwait (1932) 
    • Al Mulla Group (Kuwait, 1938) 
    • Al Homaizi Group (Kuwait, 1962) 
    • Al Boodai (Kuwait, 1958) 
    • Al Babtain (Kuwait, 1948) 
    • Alshaya Group, (Kuwait, 1890) 
    • Saud Bahwan Group (Oman, 1975) 
    • Al-Rajhi Family (Saudi Arabia, 1957) 
    • Saudi Binladin Group, (Saudi Arabia, 1931) 
    • Olayan Group (Saudi Arabia, 1969) 
    • Al-Futtaim (UAE, 1930) 
    • Al Habtoor Group (UAE, 1970) 
  9. Appendix
    • A – Family Businesses in the GCC
    • B – Sector Concentration in the GCC
    • C – Family Businesses in the rest of the world
    • D – Oldest Family Businesses
    • E – Global Family Business
    • F – Family Business – Best Practices
    • G – Differences between Family business and Non-Family business

Tables & Charts

3.1 Popular Sectors for Family Businesses in the GCC is missing
5.1 Issues Faces by Family Businesses in the Middle East

2.1 Family Business Dynamics
3.1 Family Business Sector Concentration
3.2 Sector Concentration - Saudi Arabia
3.3 Year of establishment – Family Business Groups
3.4 Year of establishment (Conglomerates) – Family Business Groups
3.5 Generation – Family Business Groups



GCC Family Business

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