Mohammed Dadabhai, chairman of the Dadabhai Group

The Dadabhai Group began its journey as a modest trading house more than fifty years ago in the Kingdom of Bahrain. As economic opportunities began surfacing in the region, the Dadabhais were quick to spot them and realise their true potential in an array of sectors. The fifties was an era of transition and Bahrain was at the forefront of the transformation taking place in the rest of the Gulf. The country’s leadership had already invested in modern education at the turn of the 20th century, long before the discovery of oil. This wise investment proved useful as the country moved from being a primarily fishing and sea-faring economy to a more urban and industrial one. For entrepreneurs with foresight and vision, it was the perfect opportunity to start or even expand their commercial operations.

Ahmed Ali Dadabhai, initially opened a modest trading outlet in the heart of the souq in Manama, dealing in a variety of items including toys, stationery, electronics and household articles. His sons helped him run this venture which grew and progressed to more ambitious ventures over the course of the coming years.

The souq, where the trading outlet was located, used to be the nerve centre of Bahrain’s commercial activities in those days. It was the place where business transactions were made and lifelong relationships forged. It was the place that embodied the Arabian tradition of hospitality and provided a more personalised way of conducting business.

The Dadabhais capitalised on the opportunities presented by Bahrain’s changing dynamics and took the first step towards diversifying their business. They captured a slice of new markets and increased their customer base. Today the group has successfully made a foray into a number of sectors including hospitality, construction, travel & tourism, real estate, communication & advertising. It continues to look at upcoming opportunities with great anticipation.

A heritage of openness, a culture of hospitality and a tradition of close interaction with the outside world have given Bahrain its entrepreneurial energy, its openness and its hunger for opportunities which has served enterprising people such as the Dadabhais well.