The Humble Beginning
The story began in January 1983 when the late Mohamed Jakel Bin Ahmad started his small retail business in Muar, Johor. The company was carrying JAKEL TRADING as a trademark in the textile industry to win over their customers. Mohamed Jakel later had expanded the business to Segamat, where the empire labeled as a dominant player in the industry.
In 1992, JAKEL TRADING further expanded its operations by venturing as a textile semi-wholesaler and supplier for the government agencies and private sectors. JAKEL TRADING continued to be a highly developed and respected textile company between 1992 and 1997.
It was difficult for JAKEL TRADING to obtain supplies due to an economic downturn at the end of 1997 until 1998. Fortunately, the crisis had been handled successfully by Datuk Hj Mohamed Faroz Bin Mohamed Jakel, who is now the Managing Director of JAKEL Group of Companies, the eldest son of Mohamed Jakel.
Due to a stock shortage in the market, JAKEL TRADING took a brave step heading directly to the manufacturers by importing stocks from overseas and sell them to the wholesalers in Malaysia. In the beginning, the Korean exporters were reluctant to work with JAKEL TRADING. Moreover, most of the importers could not extend their businesses as the bank had dismissed their facilities. However, Datuk Hj Mohamed Faroz Bin Mohamed Jakel’s failure at the first attempt was not an obstacle for him to keep trying.
Seeing his determination, the manufacturers eventually agreed. Since then, the company had its own textile importers. In the late 1990s, JAKEL TRADING had become the major wholesaler and distributor in Malaysia. Additionally, their excellent capability of financial management had won the trust of Oversea-Chinese Bank Corporation (OCBC). Thus, OCBC did not hesitate to assist JAKEL TRADING in importing fabrics and to resell in Malaysia.
One Branch, One State
An investment of RM1.6 million was made to purchase the Shaw Brothers’ Rex Cinema located in Segamat, Johor. The theater was turned into a warehouse. Although JAKEL Trading received overwhelming responses from the customers, the courageous decision was indeed worth taken. In the late 1990s, JAKEL TRADING became the major wholesaler and distributor of the textile industry in Malaysia.
With the goal of “ONE BRANCH, ONE STATE”, JAKEL TRADING has opened 20 branches throughout Malaysia. It intends to conquer the textile industry from north to south of Malaysia.
Wisma JAKEL, that is located at Jalan Bunus, Off Jalan Masjid India, equipped with a stunning six-storey and seven lots to accommodate a wide range of high-quality fabrics. On the other hand, an investment of RM30 million was made for the new branch in Kuala Lumpur. Since then, JAKEL TRADING has been labeled as a leader in the fabric business.
A huge crowd of fabrics and textiles enthusiasts flocked into Wisma JAKEL every weekend as it was the biggest textile gallery in Kuala Lumpur. However, the overwhelming responses brought inconveniences to some customers. Thus, JAKEL TRADING took an alternative to open another branch that is located in Seksyen 7, Shah Alam, Selangor. It is strategically located in front of MARA University of Technology (UiTM) where there are about 52,000 local and international students, together with 11,000 staffs. Soon enough, the branch had become the hottest textile spot in the area.
An investment of RM50 million had been dedicated for Wisma JAKEL's opening in Shah Alam. It was launched by Sultan of Selangor, Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah on September 29 2010, 5 months after its opening. The branch is made up of 80,000 square feet and accorded as the Largest Textile Retail Outlet in the Malaysia Book of Records. Therefore, it is not surprising that JAKEL TRADING is now known as the leader of Bumiputera textile business in Malaysia.
In order to get closer to the customers, JAKEL TRADING has opened another branch in Johor Bahru on 23 March 2013. The intention was to facilitate the customers from every state to choose the best fabrics and quality to meet their needs and styles. Besides, JAKEL TRADING was planning to open 2 other branches in the busy town of Ampang and Bangi, Selangor with an investment of RM30 to RM40 million respectively.
With over 5,000 employees nationwide, JAKEL TRADING had been entrusted by the PERBADANAN USAHAWAN NASIONAL BERHAD (PUNB) to become the Mentor of Prosper Bumiputera Entrepreneurs in the textile business since 2003. The company was responsible for providing training and guidance to Bumiputera entrepreneurs who are keen to be involved in this industry.
JAKEL TRADING is committed providing quality and compassionate customer service. In 2011, JAKEL TRADING was awarded as The Best Textile Company of The Year by the UDC Business Award 2011 which was presented by the former Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamed. The awards justified their efforts.
In 2013, JAKEL TRADING was awarded the Best ASEAN Textile Company 2013. It was announced by the ASEAN retail and Franchise Federation (ARFF) at the Outstanding Business Awards 2013 which was presented by Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri, the Minister of Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry.
In the same year, JAKEL TRADING was awarded the Excellence in Retail Management by the Malaysian Institute of Management (MIM) during its prestigious Global Excellence in Management Awards 2013. In addition, JAKEL TRADING was also one of the 20 winners of HR Asia Best Companies To Work For In Asia 2013.
In 2014, JAKEL was awarded Business Icon of The Year and Industry Class in Retail Business at Selangor Excellence Business Awards 2014 hosted by Dewan perniagaan Melayu Malaysia (DPMM).
In the following year, JAKEL received the Best Brand in Retail Textiles (Corporate Branding) awarded by The Asia Pacific Brands Foundation APBF in 2015. Also, they won The Global Entrepreneur of The Year at the 2015 Middle East Entrepreneurial Leadership Award.
In 2016, JAKEL received the UTUSAN BUSINESS AWARDS 2016 “MASTER CLASS ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR” and also the reward of MASTERCLASS RETAIL ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR' at PANGKOR DIALOGUE AWARDS 2016. Once again, JAKEL has become one of the BEST COMPANIES TO WORK FOR IN ASIA 2016 – JAKEL TRADING SDN BHD by HR Asia.
The main shareholders of JAKEL TRADING are among the Jakel's. JAKEL TRADING’s main shareholders are Datuk Hj Mohamed Faroz Mohamed Jakel and his siblings. The textile business is the lead to the empire's extension on several businesses. Currently, there are 26 subsidiaries operating under JAKEL TRADING. 2 of them that involve in the fashion sector are Ariani Textiles and Manufacturing (M) Sdn Bhd and Perano Sdn Bhd. Ariani Textiles and Manufacturing (M) Sdn Bhd owns the Galeri Tudung & Skaf Ariani and 20 other branches across the country. Meanwhile, Perano Sdn Bhd owns the Galeri Hajra Tudung & Selendang and operating 10 branches throughout Malaysia.
At present, JAKEL TRADING has acquired CapSquare Retail Centre and 2 office blocks in Kuala Lumpur that were developed by Bandar Raya Developments Bhd (BRDB) for an estimated RM420 million.
The Iconic Textile House - JAKEL Mall
JAKEL TRADING marked the 30th anniversary in 2015. In conjunction to its milestone, an iconic mall is launched that is equipped with 330,000 square feet, a world renowned, first single operator textile mall, globally known as the JAKEL MALL KUALA LUMPUR. It has become one of the most iconic buildings in Kuala Lumpur and thus, JAKEL TRADING’s status as the leader in the textile industry has been stabilized once again.