MUSCAT: With a personal wealth of 4.8 billion dollars, LuLu Group chairman and founder, MA Yusuff Ali, is now the richest Keralite in the world, according to the Forbes Billionaires list for 2019.
He was the 26th wealthiest Indian in the world in 2018.
How it all started?
As a teenager, Yusuff Ali migrated to Abu Dhabi in 1973 to help his uncle in his small-time distribution business. By the 1990s, Ali expanded the import and wholesale distribution arms of the company and ventured into the supermarket business, starting the LuLu hypermarket.
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At the height of the Gulf War, Ali opened the chain and yet made it a successful venture. Soon enough he opened up LuLu stores in other regions of the Middle East. Today, the LuLu Group International runs a chain of businesses with an annual turnover of over 8.1 billion dollars.
With over 48,000 employees spread out across 150 plus stores in the Middle East and in Kerala, the LuLu group is the largest employer of Indians in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The top position was claimed by Amazon Founder Jezz Bezos with a net worth of 131 billion dollars. Among Indians, Mukesh Ambani of Reliance Industries Ltd. topped the list of Indians with a net worth of 50 billion dollars.