Top 100 Indian Business Owners In The Arab World 2017

Yusuff Ali

Most young entrepreneurs today are looking to be the next big thing, with models based on disruption, new technology, radical change or luxury. But there is an alternative. A look at the businesses owned by the top Indian leaders in the Arab world tell a different story. Very few of them cater to a luxury clientele. And almost none of them are technology-based. What most do is provide value to their customers. For example, our number one leader Yusuff Ali’s LuLu Supermarket chain is not the most luxurious, but its appeal among consumers makes it one of the biggest retail chains in the region.

This year we have also compiled a list of top Indians who hold executive positions in both multinationals and local businesses. Among these executives, education is the differentiating factor. Over 80% either have Master’s degrees or are chartered accountants, and 70% hold leadership positions in Middle Eastern companies.

FORBES MIDDLE EAST has also compiled a list of the most successful second-generation Indians in the Arab world.


We collected information from questionnaires, industry or government reports and company websites. For the few companies where we could not find revenues, we made estimations based on other available information, such as volume and capacity. We were not able to include some individuals with large businesses due to lack of data.

Criteria for the top Indian owners:

– Financial impact: Revenues of the company irrespective of ownership stake.

– Employment impact: Number of employees.

– Robustness: Age of the company.

– Editorial points: Factors such as positions on industry bodies, personal achievements, CSR initiatives and ownership stake were considered.

– Criteria for the top Indian executives.

– Financial impact: Revenues of the company irrespective of ownership stake.

– Employment impact: Number of employees.

– Experience: Number of years in the industry.

– Title: The importance of the role in the organization.

– Editorial points: Factors such as positions on industry bodies, personal achievements, CSR initiatives and ownership stake were considered.

1Yusuff Ali M.A.Managing DirectorLuLu Group InternationalRetail
2Sunil VaswaniChairmanStallion GroupDiversified
3B.R. ShettyFounderNMC Healthcare and UAE ExchangeHealthcare, Financial Services
4Ravi PillaiChairman and Managing DirectorRP GroupReal Estate and Construction
5Sunny VarkeyChairmanGEMS EducationEducation
6Joy AlukkasChairmanJoyalukkas GroupJewelry
7Shamsheer VayalilManaging DirectorVPS HealthcareHealthcare
8Rajen KilachandChairmanDodsal GroupDiversified
9Shaji Ul MulkChairmanMulk HoldingsDiversified
10Rizwan SajanChairmanDanube GroupDiversified
11Azad MoopenChairman and Managing DirectorAster DM HealthcareHealthcare
12Thumbay MoideenFounder PresidentThumbay GroupDiversified
13P.N.C. MenonChairmanSobha GroupReal Estate and Construction
14Roy CJChairmanConfident GroupReal Estate and Construction
15Basheer K.P.ChairmanWestern International GroupDiversified
16Tony JashanmalGroup Executive DirectorJashanmal GroupRetail
17Lachmandas K. PagaraniChairmanAl Maya GroupRetail
18Adeeb AhamedCEOLuLu Financial GroupFinancial Services
19Kanaksi Gokaldas KhimjiDirectorKhimji RamdasDiversified
20Nilesh VedChairmanApparel GroupRetail
21Firoz MerchantChairmanPure Gold GroupJewelry
22Ashok Bhawandas AwtaniChairman and Managing DirectorNeelkamal Group of CompaniesDiversified
23Mohan ValraniManaging DirectorAl Shirawi Group of CompaniesDiversified
24Gagan GoelChairman and Managing DirectorEssel Group MEOil and Natural Resources
25Sudhir GoyelManaging DirectorGulf Petrochem GroupOil and Natural Resources
26J.P. KalwaniChairman and CEOAl Safeer GroupRetail
27Anand KapoorFounderMiDCOM GroupFood and Beverage, Telecomunation
28Jayant GanwaniCEOLal's GroupDiversified
29L.T. PagaraniChairmanChoithram and SonsRetail
30Ramesh RamakrishnanChairmanTransworld GroupTransportation and Logistics
31Harish Kumar Lal TahilianiManaging DirectorArab and India SpicesFood and Beverage
32Dhananjay DatarChairman and Managing DirectorAl Adil Group of CompaniesRetail
33Birbal Singh DanaChairman and Managing DirectorDANA GroupIndustrials, Retail
34Pradeep K. HandaGroup CEOKAPICO Group HoldingDiversified
35Yogesh MehtaManaging DirectorPetrochem Middle EastOil and Natural Resources
36Hassan DarveshChairmanDARVESHDiversified
37Siddeek AhmedManaging DirectorEram GroupDiversified
38Rajan MathraniManaging DirectorElekta GulfConsumer Electronics
39Kiran AsherGroup Managing DirectorAl Ansari Trading EnterpriseDiversified
40Paras ShahdadpuriChairmanNikai GroupConsumer goods
41Faisal KottikollonCEOKEF HoldingsDiversified
42Jacky PanjabiGroup Managing DirectorJacky's Group of CompaniesRetail
43Ajay HamlaiChairman and Managing DirectorAl Bahja GroupDiversified
44Sohan RoyChairman and CEOAries Group of CompaniesDiversified
45Asgar Shakoor PatelChairmanPatel RoadwaysTransportation and Logistics
46Sudhakar TomarManaging DirectorHakan AgroFood and Beverage
47Ajay BhatiaManaging DirectorBhatia BrothersDiversified
48Korathe MohammadChairmanK. M. Trading CompanyRetail
49Kamal PuriChairman and PresidentSkyline Group and Skyline University CollegeEducation
50Lalu SamuelChairmanKingston HoldingsTrading and Distribution
51Vardaraj ShettyChairman and Managing WorkerRamee Group of Hotels and ResortsHospitality
52Vasu ShroffChairmanRegal GroupDiversified
53Thomas K. V.Managing DirectorThomsun Group of CompaniesDiversified
54G.B. JethwaniChairmanGeebee GroupIndustrials
55Harshad MehtaChairman7Cs GroupJewelry
56Thomas AlexanderCEOAl AdrakReal Estate and Construction
57Atul AhujaCEOFlemingo InternationalRetail
58Ram BuxaniPresidentITL GroupDiversified
59George V NereaparambanChairman and Managing DirectorGeo GroupDiversified
60Bharat BhatiaCEOConares SteelIndustrials
61Surender Singh KandhariChairmanAl Dobowi GroupAutomobiles
62Abdulla Amiruddin AjmalDeputy COOAjmal PerfumesPerfumary
63Mohamed Ali SaithukunjChairman and Managing DirectorSeashore GroupReal Estate and Construction
64Eugene MayneGroup CEOTristar GroupTransportation and Logistics
65Hitesh BodaniFounder and ChairmanBond Investment Group HoldingsInvestments
66Abdul Wahab P VChairmanBridgeway GroupDiversified
67Varghese KurianChairmanAl Namal Group and The VKL GroupReal Estate and Construction
68Shailesh DashCEOAl Masah Capital and Regulus CapitalInvestments
69Shafi Ul MulkCEOGlobal Hawk DiagnosticsHealthcare
70Kabir MulchandaniGroup CEOSKAI HoldingsReal Estate and Construction, Hospitality
71Advet BhambhaniChairmanAdvet Bhambhani VenturesHealthcare
72Mahendra PatelGroup Managing DirectorGEAP InternationalIndustrials
73Zulekha DaudManaging DirectorZulekha Hospital and Healthcare GroupHealthcare
74S.K.WadhawanChairmanSamara Group of CompaniesAutomobiles
75Tushar PathakFounderAl Basti and Muktha GroupReal Estate and Construction
76Ramesh HiranandaniCEOHira IndustriesBuilding Material
77Mahesh ShahdadpuriCEOTASC OutsourcingServices
78Khurshid VakilCo-FounderMarina Home InteriorsRetail
79Shamsudheen OlakaraChairmanQuality Group internationalBuilding Material
80Praveen Kumar ShettyChairmanFortune Group of HotelsHospitality
81Deepak AroraManaging DirectorDRA Group of CompaniesReal Estate and Construction
82Amit DhamaniCEO and Managing DirectorDhamani Jewels GroupJewelry
83Mustafa VazayilManaging DirectorGargash Insurance ServicesInsurance
84K. MuraleedharanChairman and Managing DirectorSFC GroupFood and Beverage
85Raju MenonChairman and Group Managing PartnerMorison Menon GroupServices
86Manohar LahoriGroup ChairmanPalmon GroupDiversified
87Sudesh AggarwalChairmanGRP IndustriesIndustrials
88Nitish JainPresident and DirectorSP Jain School of Global ManagementEducation
89Ali Asgar MirChairman and Managing DirectorIAS MediaMedia and Advertising
90Sundar MenonChairman and Managing DirectorSun Group InternationalIndustrials
91Kulwant SinghCEO and Managing DirectorLama Desert TourismTravel and Tourism
92Ved Sharan ChhabraChairmanInter Ocean Ship RepairsTransportation and Logistics
93Sajith AnsarCEOIdea SpiceMedia and Advertising
94Mehsan ArshadCEOMams InfraReal Estate and Construction
95Khalid ManiarManaging PartnerHorwarth MakServices
96Tejinder SinghCEO360 NauticaServices
97Ganesh IyerManaging PartnerFLC GroupMedia and Advertising
98Bharat ThakurChairman and Managing DirectorArtistic YogaHealthcare
99Vito GomesFounder and CEOAviation Services ManagementTravel and Tourism
100Gaurav TandonManaging DirectorK CompanyMedia and Advertising


Ahmed Mabrouk, Ranju Warrier, Jason Lasrado