Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) is the largest and most profitable non-oil company in the Middle East, and one of the world’s 10 largest petrochemical manufacturers. It is a public company based in Riyadh: the Saudi Arabian government owns 70% of its shares with the remaining 30% of its shares being held by private investors in Saudi Arabia and other countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Dr. Fahad Al-Sherehy, the General Manager of the SABIC Technology Center in Riyadh, gave a stimulating & informative overview of the company’s global technology & innovation organization (Research capabilities and areas of focus) as part of Alfaisal University’s Research Colloquium series on Wednesday 11 November 2009. There were numerous questions from the 35 member audience of faculty, staff and students both during and after the presentation.

Dr. Al-Sherehy obtained his doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the University of British Columbia in Canada. He joined SABIC as a Technology Development Engineer in 1990; became a Process Development Manager in 2003 and was promoted to Chemical Research General Manager in 2006. Dr. Fahad has contributed to the development & commercialization of five technologies including Butene-1 and linear Alpha. He is the inventor and co-inventor of three patents and has been a Board Member of several SABIC affiliates. Dr. Al-Sherehy has also served on the Alfaisal University Advisory Research Committee.

SABIC is a leading manufacturing corporation in four main areas: chemicals, polymers, fertilizers, metals, performance chemicals and engineering thermo plastic. Areas involved include the following products:

  • Chemicals (e.g. Olefins, Methanol, Ethylene Glycol, MTBE etc).
  • Polymers (Polyethylene, Polypropylene, PVC, Polystyrene, PET).
  • Fertilizers – urea, ammonia, phosphates, and sulphuric acid.
  • Metals – flat steel and long steel.
  • Engineering Thermo Plastic (e.g. Polycarbonate, ABS)
  • Performance Chemicals (e.g. Ethoxylates, Ethanolamines, Linear Alpha Olefins etc)

It supplies these base materials to other companies who use them to make the products on which the world has come to depend.