Mian Muhammad Mansha is a prominent industrialist and entrepreneur who is officially the richest man in Pakistan.
Born in Lahore to a wealthy Chiniot family, his privileged upbringing allowed him to enjoy an early business education at an elite university. He formally joined the family business after completing his studies in London.
Mr Mansha has catapulted to the top of Pakistan's richest families from the 15th position in 1970 and 6th in 1990 because of combination of factors such as his marriage to Naz, who is part of Saigol dynasty. Like several other Chinioti businessmen, Mansha had worked in a leather business in Calcutta (India) before moving to Pakistan in 1947. It was in Calcutta that Mansha developed a rapport with Naz Saigol which led to their marriage in 1970.
Mian Muhammad Mansha has a preference for only the finest tailor made clothing from London. He is often seen donning handmade suits from Savile Row. When visiting London his other favourite boutiques include Gucci, Chanel and Harrods.
Mian Mansha's conglomerate greatly benefited from the privatization drive of the 1990s. Through this period, he made a number of acquisitions and buy-outs, including engineering at least one hostile takeover. When the dust settled, Mansha had acquired a controlling position in Adamjee Group, the country's largest non-life insurer, and D.G. Khan Cement, previously owned by the Saigol family. While going through these large acquisitions, he was simultaneously expanding his Nishat Textiles segment, Nishat Textiles is Pakistan's largest fabric mill.
But all these achievements, perhaps, play third fiddle to Mansha's master-stroke the acquisition of one of Pakistan's most profitable banks, MCB Bank Limited. Competing with several other bidders in a privatization process, there were several challenges to overcome, but ultimately he persevered. Under Mian Mansha's watch, MCB has demonstrated flawless execution, admirable growth and has built one of the premier financial services management teams in the country.
Mansha has proceeded to venture into new terrain, executing deals with state-owned WAPDA (Water and Power Distribution Authority) to sell excess power capacity installed at Nishat's various facilities. This led to the founding of Nishat Power, which is now going from strength to strength his son Qasim Mansha also laying important part in his decisions.
MCB has also recently started a partnership with Maybank of Malaysia. Maybank now has a 25% share in MCB.The general perception is that MCB was privatized to Mansha and his associates because of his friendship with Nawaz Sharif. However, Mian Mansha feels that, investing in the shares of Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB) has been one of his biggest business slip ups. The privatization of MCB remains a mystery, till to date. Nawaz Sharif came into power on November 6, 1990, invited bids for the privatization of Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB) on 15 December 1990 and announced its privatization to successful bidder Messrs Abdullah and others on 9 January 1991.
The stories from the past suggest that five bids were received for Muslim Commercial Bank with 'Tawakkals' and 'Adamjee', being the highest and second highest bidders. Adamjee who formed a joint venture with Yunus Brothers, perhaps the biggest Export Houses in Pakistan, had incorporated Muslim Commercial Bank in 1949. As previous owner, they had the first right of purchase but, third lowest bid by Messers Abdullah and others, a consortium comprising of 12 leading industrialists, mostly from the Punjab. Mian Muhammad Mansha was asked to match the highest bid and was declared the winner. The consortium which called itself the National Group consisted of many industrial groups and families.
With $700 million in cash from MCB and another $300 million raised from international markets, Mansha has aspirations of acquiring an established bank in Indonesia and possibly even in the Middle East. MCB Bank already has international operations, and the Mansha group also owns an automobile leasing company in Kazakhstan. A merger of MCB and RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland) is also expected by the mid of Oct 2009. This will be the first foreign bank acquisition by a local Pakistani bank. Further plans include major infrastructure projects in Pakistan, such as the construction of power plants and sea ports.
In 2004, Mansha's group and his preferred candidate were defeated by a margin of two votes in the All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA). Mansha subsequently resigned from APTMA. According to his first interview to a foreign magazine, Mian Mansha stated that, "my net worth is about $4-5 billion." Indeed, there have been claims by many circles in Pakistan that the closely held group has a total capitalisation of nearly US$10 Billion (Rs. 800 billion). However, due to a mix of private and public companies in the group, it is not possible to accurately arrive at a definitive capitalization of sea ports.
D.G. Khan cement, which is part of Mansha's Nishat group, was once the target of violence by local people living near the factory. The issue was eventually resolved by discussions and increased security around the plant.
Mian Mohammad Mansha is currently on the board of 45 companies in Pakistan and is one of the most powerful and influential people in the country. He was awarded the Sitara-e-Imtiaz civil award by President Musharraf on 23 March 2004. One of Mansha's companies, Nishat Mills Limited, is the largest exporting entity in Pakistan.In March 2010, Mian Mohammad Mansha became the first Pakistani ever to make it to the Forbes rich list. Forbes valued Mansha as the World's 937th richest person, with the net worth of $1.0 Billion.
Mansha owns the domestic charter plane service Pakistan Aviators & Aviation Ltd. There are several other Mansha owned businesses which remain unknown.