By Jahangir Hayat
I devoted my life to business with, commitment, consistency, continuity, courage, caliber and character to get the climax.
I would not be able to attain the level of success if I was a crazy, carefree, careless and cunning but as I was doer, deliverer, dashing, believer of destiny and democracy thus I could hit my goals. First I ran a small workshop, then stepped up to small, medium and large industry and finally made my mark in corporate sector. My father guided me and it was impossible without his prayers for me to be what I am today.
Politics is my passion and my life is incomplete without politics of democracy and I believe there is all greatness in serving the cause of humankind.
This was stated by rear inspiration for both the youth and old age, well-known trader and industry leader, Iftikhar Ali Malik, who spoke with Daily The Business.
The following are excerpts from the interview. They have been slightly edited for content and clarity:
IAM: The exemplary business tycoon when was asked how did he covered the unprecedented journey of success just from a small and simple trader to a business tycoon of Pakistan, he was very humble and kind in explaining his full of unique lessons success story.
“Love with fellow beings, luck, devotion, hard work, honesty, mercifulness and prayers of my parents have transformed me from an ordinary worker to what I am today. I started a small shop owner in Badami Bagh and serving traders industrialists, importers and exporters became the first chairman of East and West Pakistan Auto Mobile and Spare Parts Dealers Association in 1965. My father guided me and it was impossible without his prayers for me to be what I am today. I devoted my life to business with continuity, consistency, commitment,
courage, caliber and character to get the climax. I would not be able to attain the level of success if I was a crazy, carefree, careless and cunning but as I was doer, deliverer, dashing, believer of destiny and democracy and I could hit my goals. First I ran a small workshop, than small, medium and large industry and finally made my mark in corporate sector.
What are the major achievements in the corporate sector? What is the Guard Group?
IAM: Guard Filter, Guard Brake Oil and Guard Carcare are the major products that we worked out. There is no shortcut in business to be successful; therefore, we are engaged in research work on how to double tomatoes, beans, rice and other fruits and vegetables’ production. In agricultural sector Guard Group occupies a unique position. Guard Rice has achieved many milestones in enhancing agricultural per acre yield in befitting manners to meet the food needs of the rising population of the country. So far as the automobile industry is concerned, we have a strong position as cars, tractors, buses and other motor vehicles depend upon Guard Group products including, filters, brake oil and lubrication oil. Guard Group is one very famous brand of Pakistan.
What is the story behind this?
IAM: The challenging most job in the world is to develop a brand. I put all-out efforts in developing the brand name Guard. I burnt the mid night oil to develop the brand as each word of the Guard took about 10 years to become what it is today. Every brand is established after
hectic efforts. Pakistani traders and industrialists should come towards branding because branding is the need of the hour. Engage themselves in research and development to view with world. I was a trader but today I am an industrialist besides being a philanthropist as my father donated millions of rupees for two hospitals of 150 beds each where a number of indoor and outdoor patients come for their treatment. Welfare works for the fellow being are liked by the Allah Almighty and enable men to make more progress.
What is United Business Group?
IAM: United Business Group is another successful venture for the last five years and I am the chairman of the group while S M Munir is patron-in-chief besides we have won five elections of Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Earlier I have worked with another group for 20 years for which my name is mentioned in Guinness Book of World Records which is all more so because of the hard work, devotion, dedication and honesty of the purpose.
Tell us something about the traders and industry’s politics.
IAM: I was able play a very active role in setting up various plate forums for the business community.
The high rise of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry is built up with the consistent efforts of the Founder Group, Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce’s capital office in Islamabad and Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry has also been the result of our groups’ mutual efforts. Currently, I am doing my best to bring head office of SAARC Chamber of Commerce and
Industry in Pakistan. The chamber is consisting of eight countries of South Asia.
We the business community and the government of Pakistan will spend millions of rupees on the construction of the flagship office. I have contested over 40 elections and won all of them. Our Alliance is winning LCCI elections for the last 17 years and this time also we have grabbed LCCI corporate class election unopposed as none of the group had even filed nomination papers for the contest.
It is for sure that the president, senior vice president and vice president all will be from the alliance.
Your family is one of the best examples of unity. What is the binding force in this that kept all members of the family intact all the way long?
IAM: I am taking care of the fourth generation of my family and this showcases a type of unique unity in the family which is the real secret of the success of the Guard Group. I believe in unity, faith and discipline and with that very strategy I always planned to move forward in politics of LCCI, FPCCI and SAARC. This year in December I planned to contest election of President of SARRC. Politics is my passion and my life is incomplete without politics of democracy and I believe there is greatness in serving the cause of humankind.
IAM: Thank you very much.