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Strategic Management from an Islamic Perspective: Text and Cases by Khaliq Ahmad, Rodrigue Fontaine

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Chapter 18

Case 9: Unilever Bangladesha

The Appointment

On February 1, 2012, Kamran Bakr replaced Rakesh Mohan as the chairman and managing director of Unilever Bangladesh Limited (UBL). Bakr rose through the ranks after joining UBL in 1990 and worked through production, development, industrial relations, and supply-chain management. His last appointment was a successful four-year stint as managing director of Unilever Nepal. Bakr presides over the UBL board with his senior management team consisting of the directors of finance, supply-chain management, human resource management, customer development, and brand building. Bakr is a Bangladeshi national who shares the membership of the top management team with several others of his compatriots.

Bangladesh

Bangladesh is an Asian country with a population of about 150 million, consisting of mostly Muslims, along with minorities of Buddhists, Christians, and Hindus. Islam plays an important role in the culture and lifestyle of the Bangladeshi people; nevertheless, it has not become the central component of their national identity. The separation of Bangladesh from Pakistan in 1971 was, in a way, a movement against religious nationalism and had a secular leadership. Later, in 1988, the “Islamic way of life” was incorporated into the constitution of the country. Yet Islam in Bangladesh has a unique South Asian flavor of open-mindedness and tolerance. The Bengali culture and language are probably stronger in terms of societal influence ...

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