Salman F Rahman is among those businessmen in Bangladesh, who have changed the horizon and created economic opportunities which were never thought of. He proved himself as a dynamic businessperson and a visionary leader.
Born in 1951 and graduated from the University of Karachi in the late 1960s, Salman F Rahman actively entered into business in 1972. He owned a family run jute mill in the 1960s but it was nationalized after the independence of Bangladesh in 1971. He along with his elder brother Sohail F Rahman, started exports of seafood and crushed bones to the west, mostly to the UK, Belgium, Germany, France and Netherlands. They called their company Bangladesh Export and Import Company Limited. They later changed the group name to Beximco. The foreign exchange control was extremely strict at that time, so the Rahman brothers had to bring in medicines from those countries in swap of the exports. The venture became a success and they continued exploring new ideas.
The son of Fazlur Rahman and Syeda Fatina Rahman, Salman F Rahman proved himself number of times that commercial gain is not what he is after. His core enthusiasm is to improve livelihood of the greater population of Bangladesh and to expand business horizon of Bangladeshi origin companies. In 2017, Hurun Report published the Hurun Global Rich List 2017, where Salman F Rahman was ranked number 1685 in the list of total 2257 billionaires though he said the net asset of his company Beximco Group is near the amount mentioned in the report but not his personal wealth.
Being a visionary person, Salman F Rahman sees things that others do not. He has a fascinating ability to identify opportunities from a dry plot. With this ability and the desire of being successful, he has become one of the top businessmen of the country. With his vision and the mission to turn Bangladesh into a strong economy, he has taken bold steps a number of times. All his decisions came successful and allowed the economy of the country to step ahead from where it was. He is well connected in both business world and political arena. He entered politics in the 1990s and founded ‘Samriddhya Bangladesh Andolan’ party but soon joined the Awami League party. Since 2009, he has been serving as the private sector development affairs adviser to the Bangladesh Awami League President Sheikh Hasina. He also served as the president of the FBCCI in the mid 1990s.
In 1982, he established Arab-Bangladesh Bank, country’s first private bank in association of the Dubai-based Galadari Brothers Group. In 1985, he decided to sell his stake to the other partners. In the same year he bought 30% stake in IFIC Bank. He is currently the chairman of the bank.
Beximco Group was primarily a trading company of raw materials but now has become industry leaders in both manufacturing and service sectors. The company employs more than 60,000 employees and has presence in more than 45 countries around the world. Publicly traded companies of Beximco are – Bangladesh Export Import Company Limited, Beximco Pharmaceuticals, Shinepukur Ceramics and Beximco Synthetics. Their combined market capitalization is now more than $617.34 million.
Salman F Rahman’s desire to help the people in need forced him to go to Cox’s Bazar in 2017 when the Rohingya crisis broke in. He and his company set up medical health camps there and provided free treatment to Rohingya people. Beximco Group frequently sponsors social programs and events. One such program is Proyash, a specialized institution that helps growth of handicapped children. He supports Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action that delivers health messages to new mothers on their cell phones. Apart from that he runs awareness campaigns on Asthma Day, World Hypertension day, Osteoporosis Day, Diabetes Day, AIDS Day.
Born: 23 May 1951
Place of birth: Dohar, Dhaka
Education: University of Karachi
Occupation: Businessman; Vice Chairman of Beximco Group
Parents: Late Fazlur Rahman and Late Syeda Fatina Rahman
Wife: Syeda Rubaba Rahman
Children: Shayan Fazlur Rahman