Oman has a long-standing history as a maritime trading nation. The AlKhonji family has played an important part in this success since brothers Mohamed and Ahmed AlKhonji opened their first business in 1920.
The business started with a shop and a yard at Muttrah Souk, where they stockpiled anything related to dhows shipping, import, and export. Over the following generations, the businesses expanded into foods, timber, boats, building materials, transportation, equipment and services to real estate.
The family had a famous dhow, “Fateh Al Khair”, mainly used by the founder Ahmed AlKhonji to import materials from India, Pakistan, Iraq, and Bahrain. In return, vegetables, dry dates, and cooking ghi were exported to Gulf countries, India and beyond.
Older brother and founder Mohamed AlKhonji had another important role, that of official mediator between shippers, dhow owners, and supplier. Many times captains and traders were welcomed to Bait AlKhonji, when on a stopover in Muttrah. Today, the family home is used for community meetings during which social matters and developments in Oman are discussed on a regular basis.
With the surge of modernity in the 1960s and 1970s, things were not only changing for the business but also for the family. Being one of the first to have electricity, radio, and telephone, AlKhonji’s introduced cars and water pumps and electricity into the community. It is this exemplary progress that carries forward to the present and is reflected in our credo: “Together, we progress”.
However, it was the coming to power of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said on July 31st, 1970 that would set the foundation for both modern Oman and the AlKhonji family group. To this day it is a great honor for the family that the father and grandfather from both sides were invited to be among few prominent business houses to receive His Majesty at Bait Al Falaj Airport on the day of Oman’s renaissance.
In the decades that followed, the family business has grown from a small trading company to one of Oman’s most influential family conglomerates. Today, business is led by the third and fourth generations, which look forward to progressing hand-in-hand with Oman’s development and with relationships across the region.