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Abdulla Alireza was the bold and ambitious entrepreneur who started Rezayat.
As a member of a merchant family with trading interests in the Gulf and India, Abdulla, educated in Bombay and developing early on a particular fondness and aptitude for languages, began his career as the Secretary of Karl Twitchell, Director of the Saudi Arabian Mining Syndicate. Twitchell had previously been the local representative of Californian Arabian Standard Oil Company (CASOC), one of the four partners which in May 1933 created what is now Saudi Aramco.
Abdulla's combined charm and competence led him to become liaison officer for CASOC, and serve His Majesty King Abdul Aziz as interpreter, most notably at the historic ceremony in Dammam on 1 May 1939, when the King turned the wheel to load the first shipment of Saudi oil.
During a trip to Iran during the Second World War, Abdulla, having been recognized for his personal integrity and administrative ability, was asked to join the Allied administration with responsibility for the distribution of essential foodstuffs and supplies throughout the country.
On a visit to Kuwait in 1949, Abdulla Alireza saw opportunities to develop business in the Kuwait-Saudi Arabia Neutral Zone. He decided to base the Group in Kuwait, and with the help of his sons, Teymour and Fahd, steadily expanded its operations into other Gulf states, in addition to Saudi Arabia, where the Group's headquarters are now located. The Group built up important relationships with major Western and Asian contractors and industrial companies, which provided not just a solid foundation for its growth in the Middle East, but also a springboard for its expansion into other continents.