Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar was born in Alor Setar, Kedah in 1951. His family came from Hadhramaut, Yemeni. Before deciding to stay in Kedah, his father traveled to Central asia to do business. Next, his father went to Thailand. In the mid-40’s, then his father decided to stay in Alor Setar. In 1946, his father married.
Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar has seven other siblings and he was the third one. Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar lives in poor conditions. His house at Kampung Hutan Keriang does not have bed,desk and chair. This make him hard to study.
However, the situation also prompted him to start a free tuition as a welfare program under the Foundation set up under his al-Bukhary to contribute to the welfare. Currently, 15,000 students benefited from the tuition program.
Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar starts his schooling in Alor Setar, but when he reaches 9 years old, he was sent to stay with his uncle, Syed Omar in Johor Bahru. He was there from standard 4 until form 2. After that, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar returned to his hometown in Alor Setar and continues his school until form five at Saint Michael's School.
In fact, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar is not a highly educated person. He never went up to university level. However, this does not mean he was not knowledgeable. Most of the knowledge acquired through direct experience when he was active in the business world since childhood.
Due to the less fortunate families, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar helped his mother to plant vegetables to support the family income. They sell at the market at JalanTelok Wan Jah. He also sells roti canai in the same market.
During recess at school, his father will find him at school and asked him to make bookkeeping. After school, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar helped his father's flock of pet quarantine center near the train station in Alor Setar. He gained much knowledge and experience while doing the work.
In the 1970s, his father's livestock business decline due to foot and mouth outbreak. The outbreak spread across southern Thailand, Kedah and Perlis. All livestock animals die just like that. Since then, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar took over his father's business and decided to no longer participate in the livestock. He began to sell meat on a small scale.
In fact, he went from town to town in the vicinity of Alor Setar to buy unsold meat. He then wraps the meat with ice and sells it back to the Bumiputera traders and restaurants in the vicinity of Alor Setar. He succeeded in business. Success was his confidence to develop his self in the business world.
From the business of selling meat, he shifts to the transportation business. In 1972, he managed to get a permit for the four trucks of Class A. He received loan of RM110000 from MARA and he use it to buy two Mercedes 911LS lorries.
In fact, a Chinese businessman offered a sum of money for the remaining two permits that are not used. Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar refused and handed the permit back to the MARA. After buying two lorries, Tan Sri Syed open transport company called Sentosa Transport Company.
Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar uses his trucks to begin the trading of rice. Sentosa Motor Company still exists to this day and has more than 40 trucks.
In 1974, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar buys his first house-shop at JalanTelok Wan Jah under hire-purchase agreement with the UDA or the Urban Development Corporation.
Next, in 1975, he established the Shah Company and applies for a trading license from Bernas. He managed to obtain a contract to supply rice to the FELDA, MARA, Pernas Edar Sdn Sergam Sdn. Bhd., a subsidiary of the Johor State Economic Development Corporation.
After the success of the Shah Company, he set up a joint venture with two Chinese businessmen, Ghiak Gee Ng and Chua Chong Tan. Ghiak Gee is a trader of rice and a rice miller is Tan Chong.
In the joint venture company, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar holds a 52 percent stake while Gee and Chong Tan Ghiak respectively 32 percent and 16 percent. Business venture, named Bukhary Sdn. Ltd. start its operations on July 15, 1976, and his office at Jalan Telok Wan Jah.
Business Continues To Grow
From rice, he then expands his business into other commodities, sugar. This was done so to this day through Bukhary Sdn. Ltd. Annual income Bukhary Sdn. Ltd. now stands at RM250 million.
A year after Bukhary Sdn. Ltd. start their operations, he set up Bukhary (KL) Sdn. Ltd. in 1977. The company is dedicated to getting government contracts for the time being are offered to Bumiputera entrepreneurs. Operating Bukhary (KL) Sdn. Ltd. conducted in the four-storeyshophouse at Jalan Pahang, who is also purchased through a hire purchase agreement with the UDA. Her efforts have borne fruit yet.
Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar awarded a contract to supply rice, tea, powdered chocolate, powdered milk and ghee to the government. The bottom of the central office modified the packaging.
When he got a contract to supply, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar establishes Mas Milk Sdn. Ltd. in 1979. The company also is a joint venture company between himself who holds 51 percent stake in New Zealand Milk Products which holds the remaining shares. Dairy Mas Sdn. Ltd. marketed under the brand Fernleaf and Anchor.
In the mid-80's, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar sell his interest in milk Mas Sdn. Ltd. because of economic slump.
In 1978, he was invited to join the trade delegation to the Trade Ekso Canton, China. During his stay in China, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar conduct barter system, this converts coco with tea from China. Only difference today barter conducted on a large scale or bulk. For example, converting a ton of palm oil with a ton of crude oil.
After expanding his business start from the field of commodity transport, packaging and barter, he then moved to the manufacturing sector. This is due to its success were awarded contracts to make military uniforms for the Ministry of Defence. The contract is to supply the army with 120,000 pairs of shoes and 330,000 pairs of uniforms. When managed to get the contract, he started looking for suppliers. At first, he bought directly from the manufacturer.
After buying from the manufacturer, he then decides to set up two companies, namely AMTEK Holdings to manufacture shoes and Oriental Garments Uniform Division to manufacture clothing. Oriental Garments Uniform Division is the company's joint venture with Oriental Garment based in Seberang Prai.
When AMTEK Holdings listed on the Second Board of the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange in 1998, he used money obtained to purchase listings Manshop Spark and the right to manufacture and market tailored clothing Crocodile. Now, a subsidiary of Holdings issued Kompl military shoes (Kompl Shoes) and clothing designer Lee Coopers and Lois (Kompl Garments Sdn. Ltd.) For the export market.
Not enough with business clothes, he is also active in shipping business. He established Bukhari Shipping and register with the Treasury. Bukhari Shipping act as ship brokers under the policy of CABOTAGE. Through the Bukhari Shipping, Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar bought a German-made vessels aged 28 years at a price of USD1 million.
The ship, named Goose Mas is used for transporting rice from Thailand to Sabah and Sarawak. However, business suffered losses for which he was forced to sell his ship at a price of USD600, 000, a loss of USD400, 000 (USD1 million - USD600, 000).
At the same time, he purchased several parcels of land in Alor Setar and started several housing projects under the Bukhary Development Company.
Involvement In Privatization Projects
He was involved in privatization projects Johor Port Sdn. Ltd. and Johore Tenggara Oil Palm Sdn. He bought the Johor Port through tenders at a price of RM330 million. Johor Tenggara Oil Palm Sdn. Ltd. was bought at a price of RM135 million. Through Johor Port Sdn. Ltd., He Port of Tanjung Pelepas project.
Today, the Port of Tanjung Pelepas has progressed until they succeeded in convincing two international shipping companies, the Maersk Sealand of Denmark and Evergreen Marine of Taiwan to be moved from the Port of Singapore to the Port of Tanjung Pelepas.
Third project is the privatization of water privatization in which he set up Equiventure Sdn. Ltd., A joint venture company between Kembangan Dinamik and Pilecon Bhd. and the French company, Oneo. Kembangan Dinamik hold amounted to 49 percent of share.
He purchased a MMC Corporation, the engineering company at a price of RM3 per share from the capitalization Nasional Berhad (PNB). Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar also has a 22.7 percent stake in Malakoff Berhad, the electricity supply company and 20 per cent stake in IJM Corporation Berhad, in which its main business is manufacturing.
In addition, he has a 18 percent stake in the agency is involved in the trading of rice and 32 per cent stake in Pernas International Holdings Berhad, a conglomerate involved in many business sectors. While 18.7 per cent stake in Fiamma Holdings Berhad, the marketing and distribution company of electronic goods as well as 100 percent interest in the MPH, the company's retail and distribution of books.
OBJECTIVE YAYASAN AL-BUKHARY ESTABLISHMENT
Al-Bukhary foundation established in Mac 1996 as welfare body that have the role to assist the poor, support development of arts and Islamic cultureand also promote understanding between civilizations. Among Yayasan Al-Bukhary main objective is encouraging Islamic brotherhood. This foundation consisting of two unit part. A division carrying out welfare work while a division more manage fund channeling from each company of which Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar were of into date, Yayasan Al-Bukhary spent more RM 300 million for religious activity, cultural and education. Apart from that too. Yayasan Al-Bukhary only finance poor student. Among initiative that carried out are endowed student Islamic poor from all ASEAN so that learn Malaysia erest in it.
YAYASAN AL-BUKHARY MAJOR PROJECTS
Among biggest project which is underway is Kompleks Al-Bukhary construction that worth RM 400 million in Kedah which expected completed at end year 2004. Complex the later doubles as complex that complete with various facilities such as mosque, medical centers, community centre, orphanage, special academy for senior citizen and central tertiary education.
Among big project that completed is Islamic Muzium Kesenian Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur that worth RM 100 million. Muzium four storey that is first museum in Asia Pacific region that display Islamic works of art. Al-Bukhary foundation also builds 12 mosque in all country. Contribution in education fieldln year 2000, Yayasan Al-Bukhary donate a sum RM 7.75 million to Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies, namely centre of Islamic studies that famousin all world. Al-Bukhary foundation also now while help Institut Pembangunan Pendidikan Maju (MIED) in project to establish Institut Perubatan, Science and Teknologi Asia (AIMST) in Sungai Petani, Kedah.
Apart from that, Yayasan Al-Bukhary also frequently hold dialogue civilization to encourage tolerance and understanding between multi-religious society and belief.
Yayasan Al-Bukhary involvement in project which began by non-Muslims too outstanding. Although more Yayasan Al-Bukhary stress to charity project that is with a character Islamic, it still contribute to irons in the fireby non-Muslim organization. For example, Al-Bukhary foundation contribute as much as RM one million for Projek Langkawi, namely project which began by MCA to raise funds to undertaking the project education in rural and also provide scholarships to students that is under privileged.
1. ummul hasanah binti mohamad@Md shahid
2. norlianah ismail
3. noraziawati tukiran4. mohd asyraf mohd idris