Our late, beloved father, Mr. S.M. Mohideen founded our business enterprise under the Brand name “Meezan” way back in 1925. He was an enterprising businessman popularly known as ‘Meezan Hadjiyar’, the Maestro Business Magnet behind the wheel of the business. He first stepped into the trade of tea when he purchased the Ancoombra Tea Factory along with its plantations in 1946. This is the same area where the late Mr. Henry Steven first introduced tea in the year 1864. It is interesting to note that Mr. Steven himself was the cousin of the late James Taylor, popularly  known today as ‘The Father of Ceylon Tea’.

Following the acquisition of the  Ancoombra Tea Factory,  our father then having experienced the sheer exhilaration of running a tea estate, started buying over many more tea plantations in various parts of the country. He was always a man of great character and was known for stepping in strong, regardless of what business venture he was stepping into. In 1964, our father passed away prematurely at the early age of 54. Despite his untimely demise which was a huge shock to everyone who knew him, we all understood that that his legacy and philosophy should go on. So therefore, in late 1964, our eldest brother decided to take up the challenge of running the properties our father had left behind in our care. He ran the business for a period of 8 years before handing over the reins to our third brother in line for another year until 1974. It was only in January 1974, that my brother Ziaudeen Meezan and I were finally handed the reins. We entered the plantation industry at the tender ages of 18 and 17, respectively. We never expected that this small stride forward would eventually turn out to be the biggest, most trying and challenging endeavor we would ever be a part of.

We started visiting the estates, looking over and managing while gradually falling in love with the most grueling task that was, running a tea plantation. It must be remembered that we had started out with a little or no experience at all. However, it was an exciting and memorable time in both of our lives. But little did we know that our run at the helm would be cut short and limited to a period of only 8 months by way of the ‘The Land Reform Commission’, who decided to acquire all our properties in August 1974.

It took us a further 12 years before we received Nagalla estate on January 1st 1986 as part of compensation for what was taken. Then, in January 1990, after a long, hard fought battle with the LRC, Ancoombra Estate was handed back to us. The state administrators who had managed it or should I say mismanaged it since the government acquisition had run it down almost beyond the point of repair. The factory was in the most deplorable and dilapidated condition. It was a depressing sight to see but we refused to be disheartened. We devised a plan to renovate and refurbish the entire factory. Soon, with the assistance of various banks and other financial institutions, we started taking steps to bring the estate back to its former glory. Within a period of 5 years, we had managed to refurbish the factory and embrace state of the art technology. The fields started to spring back to life as well with lush, tender and rich green leaf. Things were surely but slowly starting to take a turn for the best. By the year 2000, we had progressed even further and all our hard work, enthusiasm and commitment were finally beginning to pay dividends.


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