Jacksonville Jaguars Community Report 2016-2017 - Page 6

SHAD KHAN Shahid Khan was only 16 years old when he made his way to the United States from Pakistan with only a few dollars in his pocket to attend the University of Illinois. At the time, he couldn’t afford the $9 rate per night at the local hotel and the YMCA took him in for $2 a night until his dorm was ready. While in school studying to be an engineer, Khan went from washing dishes for $1.20 to later working for a small manufacturing company called Flex-N-Gate. After he graduated with his B.S. in industrial engineering he was promoted as their lead Engineering Manager. Later, Shad left Flex-N-Gate, used his $13,000 in savings and took out a $50,000 business loan to start his own company, Bumper Works. Bumper Works revolutionized the industry through an innovative one-piece bumper design and is still considered the industry standard today. Couple years later, Flex-N-Gate went on the market and through Khan’s successes with Bumper Works, Shad was able to outright purchase Flex-N-Gate from his former employer and merge it with Bumper Works. As Shad was looking to expand Flex-N-Gate’s client base, he was being repeatedly turned down by U.S. manufacturers, which forced him to have think outside of the box. He began reaching out to Japanese manufacturers who were importing trucks without bumpers to the US and thought that could be his niche. After a 5 year run, Khan landed the deal and acquired contracts for all Japanese produced trucks being imported into the US. As trucks were being imported to Jacksonville’s Port, Blount Island Marine Terminal, Shad was right there adding his bumper onto each truck before it hit the market. Today, Shad Khan is a self-made billionaire starting his fortune from when he made his first $1.20 per hour in the U.S. as a dishwasher. His company Flex-N-Gate is today the 10th-largest North American automotive supplier and 38th largest company of its kind in the world, employing more than 18,750 people at 56 manufacturing facilities and 9 product development and engineering facilities throughout Canada, the United States, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, China and Spain. In January 2012, Shad officially became the owner of our Jacksonville Jaguars and a year later also closed on the purchase of the London-based soccer team Fulham FC. Shad and his wife Ann are huge advocates of philanthropy and have awarded more than $7 million dollars in grants to the Jacksonville community through the Jaguars Foundation.