Nooruddin Khetiwala, like many of his generation, was an ambitious man of the 1970s. His intention was not just to seek better opportunities, but to establish himself as a successful businessman. It was this zest that brought him to Sharjah, UAE, in the early 1970s at the young age of 25; a time when the country’s economy was burgeoning. His journey from the small town of Bhuj in Gujarat, India, to leading a business empire in the UAE, is a textbook lesson on how aspiration and hard work can translate into great success.
Initially, Nooruddin worked as an employee at a company in Sharjah, but quit in 1983 to pursue his vision and founded ‘Dolphin Radiators’ with just 4 employees.
Humble and hardworking, Nooruddin started out following a disciplined routine where he worked 17 to 18 hours a day and was always the first to walk in and the last one to walk out of the office. He has always believed in the importance of having focus in life and his dedication to his work is what has brought him success.
What began as a radiator business has today grown exponentially across the Automotive, Marine, Airconditioning & Refrigeration, Oil & Gas, Power, Desalination and Dairy industries to name a few offering more than 7000 products to more than 5000 clients across 65 countries.
Today, the headquarters of Dolphin Group at Ajman, UAE, is spread over an area of 400,000 sqft. It includes five factories and multiple sheds with more than 1600 employees. Eight additional facilities across the UAE consist of expansive service centers and trading outlets. Additionally, they have auxiliary facilities in the US and India. Mr Nooruddin observes with a hint of pride that, ‘the Germans are famous for their technology but even they use our technology for their products.’
The company’s HR management is also a testament to his able leadership as employee retention under him has been exemplary. It is a company tradition that employees are treated like family and birthdays are celebrated in the workspace. Mr Nooruddin always makes it a point to personally greet his employees. ‘You take care of your employees and they will take care of your business,’ he says.
He is full of praise for the visionary leadership of the nation, which has swiftly transformed the UAE into a country ahead of its time, making it the most dynamic business hub in the region.
Mr Nooruddin’s work takes him around the world for various exhibitions and events. When he is not wearing his business jacket, he puts on his holiday hat to explore new places and learn more about other cultures. He also has a keen interest in buying new machinery and keeps himself informed about upcoming technologies. This youthful approach to constant learning has been a defining element in his success story.
His message to the youth is very simple: ‘Don’t quit and don’t jump to multiple things at the same time. Focus and hard work are the keys to success and will take you to your ultimate goals. Remember, there is no shortcut to success,’ – a summarisation of his life’s story.