Zayed Al-Hussani Group Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Zayed Al-Hussaini Group: the road ahead for the family business in the UAE


The report presents a case about Zayed Al-Hussaini Group, a family-owned business which had been incorporated by Zayed Al-Hussaini in 1960. Initially, the whole family was involved in pearl diving business but later on the industry reported significant decline, which led the family to explore other businesses. After the evaluation of various alternatives, Zayed decided to start his own shipping business along with his brother, Ali.

The organization diversified its business operations by entering into long-term contract with leading MNC, which offered 51% partnership in the local establishment of the company. Later on, the company enjoyed tremendous growth over the next few years and proactively expanded their existing business portfolio.  By 1990, the company had a long range of portfolio comprising of fashion, fast food, automobiles, real estate, financial services, etc.

The group was considering to expand its operation beyond the borders so, Bilal, the son of Ali was given the charge to overlook the foreign operations but the expansion bought a big deficit to the group’s financial stability and the group reported a substantial reduction in revenue and operating profits. In order to tackle this problem, an urgent board meeting was called to discuss the recent collapse. The meeting resulted in the separation of the business and Ali along with his son, Bilal was given the charge to handle the long range of operations in Oman.

After the separation of business, the group was renamed as Zayed Al-Hussaini Group and the children of Zayed took charge of the operations of the business.

Problem Statement

A major problem arose when Zayed’s son, Hamdan passed away in an accident and Ahmed was called back from London to tackle the operations of the business. In a board meeting, Ahmed was offered the position of the group’s General Manager but he was not willing to accept such an offer, believing the fact that he was unable to set priorities for both the business and family.

Case analysis

The report presents a case about the family-owned business, which had been incorporated by Zayed in 1960. The business expanded over the years and family members were allocated the charge of different Strategic Business Units (SBUs). Later on, the group faced difficulties in operating the business and managing the family members, so the chairman was considering to appoint a new group general manager from the family to handle the entire problem and effectively run the operation of the business.

Family Structure

Business Line Division

After the seperation of both the brothers, the children of Zayed took the charge of the operations of the business; Maryam was assigned as the General Manager of the whole group whereas Zainab was given the charge to manage the real estate, shipping and distribution units. Since the portfolio of Zayed Al-Hussaini Group was very diversified , hence the business line was organized into five main divisions. The business line division has been categorized on the basis of profit contribution.


Move towards innovation

The new management of the group understood the sensitivity of the operations and a strategic view to achieve significant growth, so the management established operational departments across different business line to allow more resources to be invested in each division. Further,.......................

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