Ajlan and Bros... The 'one heart' partnership
His trade began in “Basta” next to his father’s store in the old days in “Al Maqbara Market,” specifically in “Al Hasawiya Market” in central Riyadh - which included merchants selling “livelihoods” such as: Cardamom, ghee, ginger, some spices, and small shops selling clothes and fabrics - he used to go to the market with his father when he was five years old, and with the days he absorbed the way of buying and selling, and the opportunity did not prevent him from sitting in his father’s shop when he went out to collect some money, which gave him experience in how Dealing with customers, and in 1978 he found himself faced with two options, either to join scholarships abroad or to continue commercial work. Indeed, he chose commercial work, and began trading in fabrics, clothes, ghutr and wax.
“ Ajlan bin Abdulaziz Al Ajlan” - Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ajlan and Bros. Company - and his brothers Saad - may Allah have mercy on him - and Muhammad and Fahd - after their father's retirement - were able to work in the market, partnering "on one heart", expanding the activity, and even opening branches outside the city of Riyadh, And major cities such as Jeddah, Makkah, and the cities of the Eastern Province and Buraidah, until they now have a network of branches in all cities of the Kingdom, and they have also begun to fulfill customer requests through sales representatives everywhere without exception, even in the Gulf countries.
Al Ajlan revealed that the defining point in their trade was in the year 1990, when satellite channels entered after the Gulf War, and the concepts of marketing were changed, with a change in consumer culture, and thus the marketing method was required to establish the company’s own brands to maintain the quality of products. He explained that he learned from his father that the love of work and devotion to him lead to the achievement of successes, and after success comes the preservation of the good reputation; Because it is real capital in a business. "Al-Riyadh" investigates the beginnings and successes of businessman "Ajlan Al Ajlan ".
My father is my teacher
About the beginnings, "Ajlan Al Ajlan" said: I was born in the city of Riyadh in “Al-Shumaisi neighborhood” east of King Saud Medical City, where the “Ajlan” families were stationed there, then we moved from “Al-Shumaisi” to “Al-Maather” neighborhood in 1398 AH, adding that he studied elementary school in “Hassan Bin Thabet School” In Al-Shumaisi, and the middle school in “Palestine School”, and finally in “Al-Jazeera High School,” he recalled some of his childhood friends among the children of uncles and others, such as “Sajdan,” “Abu Ubaid,” and “Al-Ghadeer,” describing the lanes in the past that the houses were adjacent, where they were The nature of the neighborhood is mountainous and its entrances are all dirt, and life was simple, indicating that the children of the neighborhood were playing with each other in those streets, stressing that the old neighborhood did not constitute a residential complex, but rather one family, so people know each other.
The influence of his father - may Allah prolonged his life - in his life was not hidden, for he is his teacher who gave him all confidence since he was young, which gave him more boldness and boldness towards work, and even decision-making, then comes after that his brothers "Saad" - may Allah have mercy on him - And "Muhammad" and "Fahd" and about the most prominent situations, he explained that there are many situations and stories, including that when he was (16) years old, he bought the first car for the amount of (14) thousand riyals in 1975 AD, which is a green Mazda car. Color.
He accompanied his father to the market at the age of five and learned the first lesson in life: "Good reputation is real capital. "
A small bite
With regard to the beginnings of work in the clothing and wax trade and the most prominent stages of development, "Al Ajlan" mentioned that the beginning of their trade was at the hands of his father, and that was at the end of the fifties, as it was a simple trade in the "Al-Maqabara Market", specifically in the Al-Hassawiya Market, where he was in that market. Merchants sell livelihoods such as "cardamom", "ghee" and "ginger" and some spices, and also sell some clothes and fabrics in small shops, adding that he used to go to the market with his father at the time he was five years old, and with days he understood the way of buying and selling, and how to deal with Customers, indicating that when he reached (12) years old, he started selling in "Basta" next to the father's shop, where he used to sit in his shop when he went out to collect some money, which gave him experience in how to deal with customers, pointing out that in 1978 he found himself in front of Two options, either to join scholarships abroad or to continue the business. Indeed, he chose commercial work and began to trade in textiles, clothes, "ghutr" and "shamgha ".
He added: The purchasing power at that time was strong, as the products expanded, indicating that the activity of the father's store shifted from a store that sold foodstuffs to a clothing store, then his father retired from working in the market and sat on the farm; To continue trading clothes and waxes.
Spread and Branches
Al Ajlan explained that after a year, his brother Saad - may Allah have mercy on him - joined him, then Muhammad, then his younger brother Fahd, indicating that after that they turned the first shop into a wholesale center, the second for his brother Saad, and the third To his brother "Muhammad", pointing out that they open stores in the early morning and close them in the evening, while continuing to work, stressing that they used to carry the goods themselves when they did not find porters, noting that after this stage they began to expand and open branches outside Riyadh in major cities such as Jeddah and Makkah And the cities of the Eastern Province and Buraidah, and their business expanded until they now have a network of branches in all cities of the Kingdom, stressing that they meet customer requests through sales representatives everywhere without exception, even in the Gulf countries.
He added: In the year 1990 AD and during the Gulf War, it was a turning point for us, as satellite channels entered after that war, and the concepts of our marketing method were changed, as there was a change in the consumer culture, and therefore it was required to change the marketing method, by establishing the company's commercial brands, to maintain the quality of the products. And we set the right price for the consumer.
Al Ajlan stated that they limited their work to “ashmagha”, “al-ghutar”, “cotton” and “dresses,” adding that one of the most important trademarks that were registered at that time was the “Drosh” brand, as the market owned nearly 50% of it. ), Indicating that they spent about (22) years (100) million riyals in advertising for the brand "Drosh", and after the high cost prices in European countries and Japan and the rise in labor prices, we went directly to China. Because most of the American and European companies have established factories for themselves in China, indicating that since 1400 A.H. to this day they are still working in this field, that is, more than (34) years, indicating that the capital of Ajlan and Bros. Company has reached nearly (300) million riyals.
Regarding buying the goods, he said: We used to buy them from merchants in Jeddah and Makkah, as well as Kuwait, then we started importing from Japan, and their prices were economically feasible, as well as from China via Kuwait.
1990 was the "turning point" with the change in marketing concepts and the emergence of brands
A constant struggle
Regarding the reasons for his success in the commercial business, Al Ajlan mentioned that the most important reasons are reliance on God Almighty and his success, then the presence of his brothers with him at work, and their constant struggle to achieve success, also honesty in dealing with customers and gaining the confidence of customers, with the use of marketing and administrative competencies from In order to develop and expand the business, stressing that “Ajlan & Bros. Company” is one of the best companies in terms of competencies, business management and employing technology to develop work, indicating that with regard to diversification in commercial activity, the most important thing is investment in the field of original work and through it they make profits, and these profits are made Developing it by investing in industrial or real estate fields, and thank God, now we have real estate investments in Europe and America and industrial investments in China and in some other countries, advising young people to pay attention to education first, then having work capabilities, love and devotion to it, in addition to going to work in the private sector.
Communication and compassion
Al Ajlan talked about the reality of society in the Kingdom in terms of customs, traditions, education and health, as well as work and openness, saying: Saudi society remains one of the best societies in the world, and despite the presence of some negatives and changes, it is still a society that maintains good habits and maintains family and social contact, wishing that this communication, compassion and social solidarity will continue, adding that education is not at the desired level, where I note A big difference between public education, which represents (99%) and private education, stressing that what is required is to focus on quality, not quantity, and for there to be an education that has outputs that push the student to be able to work and produce, indicating that with regard to university education and the program of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz for external scholarships is a wonderful and unprecedented step, and it will create a great job boom in various fields.
Regarding the reality of "health" in the Kingdom, he explained that the state has allocated huge sums in this sector, and many medical cities and hospitals have been established, and unfortunately there are citizens who complain about the lack of opportunity for treatment !
The outlook has changed
Al Ajlan explained that with regard to the reality of “work” in society, before the year 1975 CE, that is, before the oil boom, the citizen used to perform all work, and practiced all professions from construction, trade and other things, and after the boom, the young man’s view changed, so he wanted government work that was specified with certain working hours and then left. Stressing the importance of encouraging young people to work in professions that generate big money, instead of benefiting from expatriate workers, as it is possible to create a suitable atmosphere for young people to work in commercial, manual and industrial professions, stressing the "openness" that led us to a state of continuous change and development Considering that development is the year of life, adding that the beginning of the challenge to face the difficulties of life begins with the family, whose children must be founded on solid foundations, in addition to what they receive from schools, with the instillation of the spirit of honorable competition in them, indicating that the circle of challenge extends to include all society, In order to create a better society, we must create a spirit of tolerance and the opportunity for opinion and other opinion.
The default of some businessmen towards society
Ajlan Al Ajlan emphasized that businessmen are part of this society, and they have responsibilities and duties to serve their societies in any way, adding that through creativity in ideas a meaningful and comprehensive participation is achieved, regretting that some businessmen have not performed their roles towards this society in a comprehensive and general way. And there is a clear failure by them towards society, indicating that they can provide the best.
He added: My talk does not deny the existence of some businessmen who have contributions in the fields of education, training, health, housing and charitable work, "pointing out that his company and his brothers have contributions in a number of charitable works towards society, and there are some works that seek reward from God Almighty, stressing that in a way In general, they have annual donations of no less than (40) million riyals to charitable organizations in all cities and villages, and they also directly support building mosques and those in need, stating that they have a Saudi youth training center, in addition to supporting the Saudization system in employing young men and women.
Our problem in trademark imitation !
Ajlan Al Ajlan explained that commercial work is not without obstacles, but with persistence, continuous work, perseverance and patience, a person can overcome them, or at least coexist with them, adding that what they suffered the most was the imitation of trademarks that lead to the negation of their efforts in promoting and developing the brand. However, by follow-up, persistence, and cooperation with the Ministry of Trade, they were able to eliminate counterfeiting.
He added: “The clothing sector is ranked second in terms of importance after the foodstuff sector, which occupies the first place,” indicating that his work experience spanned more than (35) years, in addition to more than (10) years working with his father, explaining that he learned that love Work and devotion to him by giving him time and effort with continuous determination will lead to achieving successes, and after success comes the preservation of the good commercial reputation; Because it is the real capital in the business, it is also necessary to choose the appropriate commercial activity for the financial capacity, while not dispersing efforts in more than one activity, so that it moves from one activity to another; Because this method does not establish a trade, and you will not gain sufficient experience from it.