Cape Times

RIP Dr Hassen Adams: the tragic loss of a S African business giant


DR HASSEN Adams, former chairperso­n of SunWest and founder of Grand Parade Investment (GPI), died last Wednesday, following a long illness, at the age of 72.

His funeral was held on Thursday. Adams, an engineer, has left a legacy not only of financial astuteness, but of empowering people and community involvemen­t.

Hassen held directorsh­ips in diverse industry sectors, including constructi­on, gaming, shipping, entertainm­ent and leisure, and had extensive experience in corporate finance.

He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Philosophy from the Department of Economic and Management Science at the University of the Western Cape.

In 1996, six people met in Cape Town to establish a truly broad-based empowermen­t company that could represent the diversity of marginalis­ed communitie­s in the Western Cape. One of them was Adams, the founder and future chairperso­n of GPI.

Sun Internatio­nal said in a statement last week: “One by one, shareholde­rs were recruited at small community meetings and roadshows held across Cape Town’s townships. Dr Adams formed part of the team who persuaded each shareholde­r that by committing their hard-earned savings into starting GPI, they would one day reap handsome benefits.

“It did not take long. With R28 million in capital GPI was born, becoming the BBBEE partner in SunWest, the Western Cape subsidiary of gaming and hospitalit­y group, Sun Internatio­nal. As the SunWest chairperso­n, Dr Adams became a stalwart supporter of GrandWest, The Table Bay Hotel, and Golden Valley Casino and Lodge,” it said.

GrandWest general manager, Mervyn Naidoo, said: “We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of a giant. Hassen Adams the man was truly a trail blazer. He took on and conquered insurmount­able challenges throughout his entire life, and served as an inspiratio­n to me and so many others. He rose from humble beginnings, which he never forgot, to become an entreprene­urial businesspe­rson.

“He loved his family, he loved his grandkids and he loved life. He stayed true to his roots and always treasured and supported our local communitie­s.

“He approached business with neverendin­g zest and vigour. Nothing was impossible for him. He always found a way, in fact the harder the challenge, the more determined he became.

“The beacon that was Hassen

Adams may have been sadly extinguish­ed, but the light that brightened so many lives will shine on forever. Dr Adams, you leave a rich legacy that will live on forever,” Naidoo said.

The Table Bay hotel general manager, Joanne Selby, said: “Despite achieving business success he never forgot his roots as a young child in District Six and other Cape Flats communitie­s. “To the end Dr Adams stayed true to his values, never forgetting where he came from, and what he set out to do.

His warmth and passion for life touched many people, and he will be remembered with great affection and fondness by myself and the management and staff of The Table Bay hotel.”

Adams’s love of horses led to his becoming the owner of a large string of thoroughbr­ed race horses and a successful breeder.

Sun Internatio­nal said: “Empowermen­t pioneer and innovator Dr Hassen Adams, former chairperso­n of SunWest, has sadly died in Cape Town today (Wednesday) following a long illness, which he bore with grace and courage.

“He played an integral role in our Western Cape developmen­ts with the launch of GrandWest, The Table Bay hotel and The Golden Valley Casino and Lodge. We would like to extend our deepest sympathy to his family. He will be missed by many,” it said.

In 2013, Adams partnered with Burger King Worldwide to bring the franchise to South Africa.

He was also instrument­al in putting together the consortium for the buyout of the V&A Waterfront with Sheikh Mohammed, the ruler of Dubai, and others, which was eventually sold.

 ?? ?? DR HASSEN Adams, former chairperso­n of SunWest and founder of Grand Parade Investment, died last Wednesday following a long illness, at the age of 72. | SUPPLIED
DR HASSEN Adams, former chairperso­n of SunWest and founder of Grand Parade Investment, died last Wednesday following a long illness, at the age of 72. | SUPPLIED

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