Ever since the early 18th century, Bombay was India’s largest trading city and one of the largest ports of the eastern world. From there, cotton,spices, silk and raw materials of Indian subcontinent went out to the world. Naturally, it attracted energetic, hardworking persons having entrepreneurial skills.Here in 1841, a trading company by the name of Khoja Mithabhai Nathoo was established. It was a family business trading in metals and other commodities which had clients both in India and abroad. In 1891, a teenage boy joined the family business by the name of Habib Esmail who was to transform the company.
The young Habib was so successful that by the age of 18, he not only became a partner in the business but was also the President of the Metals Market. His commercial skills, personal reputation and ever growing contacts moulded the company into a major trading firm.The business prospered and the family and the firm rapidly acquired a reputation for its fair dealing, honesty and trustworthiness. Upcountrytraders returning home, began to deposit their surplus cash with the company for safe keeping. From here to merchant banking was a natural progression as the company began to provide trading finance to its customers. He started the firm Habib & Sons in 1921 and changed the family name to Habib when his four sons namely Ahmed Habib, Dawood Habib, Mohammed Ali Habib and Ghulam Ali Habib joined the business.
The firm expanded rapidly - banking remaining a core business. This in turn led to the formation in 1941 of Habib Bank Ltd. Bombay, as a public limited company. The bank was to become the flagship of the family’s industrial and commercial ventures. Prior to the creation of Pakistan the bank moved its head office to Karachi and played a vital role in providing the basic banking and financial needs of this new country.
The original Habib Bank began modestly in Bombay in 1941 when it commenced operations with a fixed capital of 25,000 rupees. Impressed by its initial performance, Mohammed Ali Jinnah asked the Habib Bank to move its operations to Karachi after the independence of Pakistan. Habib Bank Limited established itself in the Karachi in 1943 and became a symbol of pride and progress for the people of Pakistan. The Habib family would own and manage the bank until the Pakistan government nationalized it on 1 January 1974.
In 1991, the government again decided to allow the private sector to establish commercial banks in the country. Dawood Habib Group was amongst the first to be granted permission to set up a new bank under this policy. Bank AL Habib Limited was incorporated in October 1991 by the grandsons of Habib Esmail and started operations in January 1992. Although Bank AL Habib commenced operations in 1992, it embodies the same high standards of integrity, prudence, and trust which have characterized Habib Family's banking operations in Pakistan and abroad for about 70 years. The bank is particularly conscious of the trust reposed in it by the depositors, and its prime duty is to protect and honour this trust all times. Guided by the values taught and practiced by Habib Esmail more than a century ago, the bank has continued to grow and progress in all areas of its operations. In a short span of 25 years, the Bank's assets have grown to more than Rs, 750 Billion, with a network of 637 branches and sub-branches, a Wholesale Branch in the Kingdom of Bahrain, Seychelles and Malaysia and Representative Offices in Dubai, Istanbul and Beijing, China.
Recognizing the demand for natural commodities, the group set up sugar and textile mills in the 1960s. During the years, the sugar division expanded into allied manufacturing setting up a distillery plant to produce Industrial Alcohol which further led to the conversion into Ethanol Fuel. CO2 was another division created to manage our resources efficiently and today by God's Grace, we are a major supplier to beverage and food processing companies.
Bank AL Habib Limited
Mackinnons Building, I.I. Chundrigar Road,
Reuters Code - BKEQ.KA
+92 21 3241 2421, +92 21 3244 6916, +92 21 111 786 110
Habib Sugar Mills Limited
3rd Floor Imperial Court
Dr Ziauddin Ahmed Road,
Reuters Code- HABS.KA
+92 21 3568 0036
Habib Insurance Company Limited
1st Floor, State Life Building No. 6,
Habib Square, M.A. Jinnah Road,
Reuters Code - HABI.KA
+92 21 111-03 03 03