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Mon 23 Jan 2017 04:22 PM

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Prominent Saudi industrialist Sheikh Adel Aujan dies, aged 70

Sheikh Adel was the chairman of one of the largest Middle Eastern beverages company, Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Company

Prominent Saudi industrialist Sheikh Adel Aujan dies, aged 70

Sheikh Adel Aujan, one of the Gulf’s most prominent  industrialists, has passed away, aged 70.

Sheikh Adel passed away peacefully on Sunday morning during a visit in Jeddah. His funeral is being held in his home city Dammam on Monday, a statement said. 

Sheikh Adel was the chairman of one of the largest Middle Eastern beverages company, Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Company (formerly known as Aujan Industries). 

Over a 48-year career with the group, Sheikh Adel grew the Dammam-based business into a multi-billion-dollar drinks giant, with brands such as Vimto and homegrown brands like Rani and Barbican. 

The Saudi businessman was also 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 (ACCBC). 

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, CEO, ACCBC, added: “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.

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.