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2015 Construction Week Qatar Top Developers

While CWQ compiles an annual Power List of top contractors and consultants, so too this year, we have compiled a list of top developers

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Construction Week Qatar compiles an annual Power List of the country’s most influential construction companies and leaders.

CWQ acknowledges and recognises that without the input and contribution of the ruling family, Qatar would be a less interesting and dynamic place.

Nevertheless, in order to level the playing field, CWQ has done its best to highlight the influence of those without direct ruling family connections. We have also created a separate list of the top developers in Qatar as it is not realistic to compare this sector with contractors and consultants.

While you will probably disagree with parts of, or the entire list, we believe it remains a valid and valuable contribution to the industry’s development, a fair representation and reflection of Qatar’s construction sector, and a worthwhile talking point.

Congratulations to all who have made it on to the list and thank you to our power players for contributing to the buoyant growth of the construction sector that Qatar continues to enjoy.

So here is the list of top developers as determined by influence and presence, in alphabetical order:

Al Faisal Holding
Kamel El Agela, Chief real estate officer

Founded as a small company back in 1964, dealing in automobile parts, Faisal Holding has transformed into one of the leading private organisations in the country under H.E. Shieikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al-Thani , who has been at the forefront for many decades, overseeing the changes. The company embraces a vast number of markets, including: property, hospitality, construction, trading, and transport.

Kamel El Agela joined the company in 1985, and has spear-headed most of Al-Faisal’s construction projects and he has held the position of chief real estate officer in the company since 2005.

Previously he was general manager of Derwind Trading and Contracting, a subsidiary of Al-Faisal Holding since 2006. El Agela holds a Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering attained from Al Azhar university in Egypt.

With Qatar’s sights set on the 2022 World Cup and the 2030 National Vision, the reach of the group ensures that the companies under the Faisal Holding umbrella will continue to play a significant part in the ongoing transformation of the country.

Eng. Nasser Ali Al Mawlawi, President

Qatar’s Public Work Authority (Ashghal) is undertaking major infrastructure development that will support the future growth of the country. The authority holds the key to a raft of building, development and maintenance work, representing billions of riyals of work for an increasingly globalised list of consultants and contractors.

These include the Expressway Programme contract, the value of all projects currently under construction is estimated at QAR 16-billion; the Local Roads and Drainage Programme, which is a nationwide programme that includes the development of roads, drainage and new infrastructure in all areas of Qatar to raise the standard of living for all the citizens and residents, with a total estimated cost of QAR 50-billion and a key programme that provides vital drainage infrastructure for the southern part of Doha, the Inner Doha Re-sewerage Implementation Strategy or IDRIS. This scheme will include a major deep tunnel sewer network and advanced sewage treatment works. This project is estimated in excess of QAR 10-billion.

And leading Ashghal is Eng. Nasser Ali Al Mawlawi, an electrical engineering graduate from Boston University. He served the Qatar armed forces for 25 years before being promoted to the Organisation Committee for the 2006 Asian Games, held in

Doha, overseeing the facilities and project management. By 2007 he was CEO of the Barwa City project before being appointed acting managing director of Ashghal. Now president, he has played a strong part in the body’s organisation and execution of projects, and at the same time forging strong diplomatic ties with nations across the world.

Barwa Real Estate
Hitmi Al-Hitmi, Group Chairman

Barwa Real Estate is led by group chairman, Hitmi Al Hitmi.

Qatari Diar, a company owned by the Qatar Investment Authority holds a 45% share in Barwa, which is the largest listed real estate company in Qatar in terms of real estate developments.

Approximately 50% of all Barwa's employees are Qatari nationals. Although the group's main activities remain in Qatar, Barwa has a wide array of investments and operations in 13 other countries regionally and internationally.

In terms of real estate developments, as of December 2011, it had a total asset capitalisation of approximately QR66 billion.

However, in July 2015, Barwa Real Estate Group announced signing a Sharia-compliant financing contract with the International Bank of Qatar, worth $175 million (approximately QR640 million).

The signed contract’ objective is to refinance an outstanding Islamic financial liability of Barwa Real Estate, over seven years from the date of the draw. The financing contract comes in line with Barwa business plan which was recently released, and which revealed Barwa’s intentions to refinance its existing credit liabilities for longer periods of time and on better terms in order to strengthen the financial position of the group.

Ezdan Real Estate
Ali Mohammed Al Obaidli, group CEO (Ezdan Holdings)

The roots of Ezdan Holding Group date back to 1960, when it was founded as a private company under the name of Thani Bin Abdullah Housing Group. In early 2007, after undergoing several stages, it was transformed to Ezdan Real Estate Company, which became a public joint stock company during the same year.

Ezdan Holding Group owns huge real estate projects in different parts of Qatar in a variety of sectors. These projects are managed by Ezdan Real Estate Company, which operates under the Group in different areas in the country and is engaged in real estate investment locally and internationally, in addition to contributing to the development of Qatar's infrastructure, in compliance with Islamic Sharia.

Ezdan Holding Group won ‘The Property Company of the Year 2015’ in the State of Qatar, an award organised by the Arabian Business magazine.

According to Arabian Business Qatar magazine, specialised in market economic and financial analysis, Ezdan Holding Group has acquired a leading position in the classification list of the 30 most prominent companies based on market value, prepared by the Arabian Business Qatar magazine. Ezdan Holding came third with a market value of about QR48.2 billion, equivalent to ($13.2 billion), as one of the big players in the Qatari financial market, overcoming the regional and global regressions and achieved a breakthrough in the financial performance thanks to their strategy and vision in the world of investment.

Katara Hospitality
Hamad Abdulla Al Mulla, CEO

Katara Hospitality, previously known as Qatar National Hotels, is a hospitality owner, manager and developer. Through partnering with some of the world’s finest hotel brands including The Ritz-Carlton, Sheraton, Raffles, Marriott, Mövenpick and The Bürgenstock Selection, the company has expaned around the globe. Is also develops the home-grown Merweb business hotel brand.

Hamad A. Al-Mulla has been the chief executive officer of Katara Hospitality Ltd. since February 2011.

Bringing over 20 years’ experience in top management positions within various Katara Hospitality properties in Qatar including: the Sheraton Gulf Hotel, currently known as the Doha Marriott Hotel and Merwebhotel Al Sadd Doha, Katara Hospitality has been involved in developments for the Katara Towers, Lusail Marina District Towers underway in Lusail City, due to be operational in 2016.

The project will boast four exclusive islands and 19 multi-purpose residential, mixed-use, entertainment and commercial districts, and is set to accommodate a total estimated population of 450,000 people.
With thousands of hotel rooms needing to be built in Qatar over the next decade, Katara Hospitality is a company to watch.

Lusail Real Estate Development Company
Eng. Essa Mohammed Ali Kaldari, CEO

Al Kaldari is the man who heads up one of Qatar’s most noteworthy projects, Lusail City. With its numerous hotels, sports arenas and leisure centres, Lusail City will be one of the most important and significant cities hosting the main stadium, teams, fans and audiences during the 2022 World Cup.

Lusail Real Estate Development Company (LREDC) is a subsidiary of Qatar Diar, and continues to award billions of dollars-worth of contracts to be completed in the Lusail development in the run up to the 2022 World Cup. On Lusail City, Al Kaldari said: “At LREDC, we are facilitating and consolidating personal relationships with Lusail City’s primary stakeholders, with special focus on investors and development partners, through offering a wide array of services to meet their development and construction goals.

“We are very proud to create a state-of-the-art, sustainable community development, a place where our vision is becoming tangible, and a place that will live and breathe for decades to come.”
Al Kadari is also on the board of Qatar Management Projects, HOCTIEF and Barwa New Cairo. The company is one with health and safety and community welfare at its heart, and teamed up with Samsung C&T early last year to open a Safety Orientation & Training Centre to train those working on projects in Lusail City.

Mazaya Qatar
Rashid Fahad Al Naimi, chairman

Mazaya Qatar is a public company, listed on Qatar Exchange since October 2010. The company operates within the real estate sector focusing on diversified real estate activities. It has four subsidiaries operating across Qatar and Lebanon, working on real estate development and real estate services. Based in Doha, Qatar and established in January 2008, Rashid Fahad, is the man at the helm.

Mazaya Qatar is owned by a group of Qatari investors, with Kuwaiti real estate developer Al Mazaya Holding retaining a stake of just over 5%, Qatar Foundation hosts the biggest single stake (21.2%), with other significant investors including Qatar Investment Projects Company (17.2%) and United International for Project Management (12.8%).

Mazaya Qatar Real Estate Development is responsible for developing the $275mn Marina Mall development planned for the Lusail district of Qatar, alongside the 1,165-unit Sidra Village complex within Qatar Foundation’s Education City development.

The value of Al Mazaya Holding Company’s projects add up to around $2bn, with a portfolio that includes a wide range of projects, from exclusive villa communities and plush residential apartments to state-of-the-art commercial spaces, including office, business and healthcare. Company interests extend to all parts of the GCC region including Kuwait, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Oman and Lebanon, a testimony to continued growth.

Mshreib Properties
Eng Abdulla Hussan Al-Mehshadi, CEO

With Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser as chairperson, Msheireb Properties is responsible for the 4,310,000m² Downtown Doha scheme that is set to be the world’s first widespread sustainable generation of a city’s downtown area.

Few projects will be as important to the future look of Qatar’s capital city. Valued at $5.5bn, the Msheireb project is one that has caught the imagination and Eng Abdulla Hussan Al-Mehshadi is the man in charge of this ambitious redevelopment.

Included in the creation is a national archive, as well as a mosque, heritage buildings and infrastructure works.

“At Msheireb Properties, our aim is to change the way people live, work and view urban environments. Our flagship project, Msheireb Downtown Doha is ground-breaking as it will transform the heart of Doha and provide a blueprint for the way urban areas are developed and regenerated,” said Eng. Abdulla Hassan Al-Mehshadi.

On completion, Msheireb Downtown Doha will map out all the elements of a truly sustainable global city; a strong sense of community, integrated transportation, sustainable solutions and an enhanced standard of living. The creation of Msheireb

Downtown Doha will provide glimpses into the past for future generations and add another dimension to our country’s pioneering spirit.

Qatar Holding
Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed bin Saud al-Thani, CEO

Qatar Holding, the investment arm of Qatar Investment Authority, continues to grow since its inception in 2006. CEO, H.E. Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed bin Saud al-Thani replaced Ahmed Al-Sayed, at the end of 2014.

Qatar Holding is a private equity firm specialising in tactical and direct investments in strategic private and public equity. Its investments include mineral resources, natural resources, and infrastructure projects. It also invests in power generation, water desalination and treatment, heating and cooling systems, and fuel loading and unloading equipment.

Starting from a handful of assets, the portfolio of Qatar Holding has grown to include numerous investment assets in 30 countries across the world.
It has made a name for itself by making noteworthy foreign purchases, including London’s Canary Wharf which, with Canadian investor Brookfield Properties, it purchased for £2.6bn, while adding to its collection of luxury London hotels after buying Claridge’s, The Berkeley and the Connaught from Sir David and Sir Frederick Barclay earlier this year. Constellation Hotels, the buyer, is part of the Qatar Holding investment vehicle and has been steadily amassing some of Europe’s best-known hotels.

Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani comes with wide experience in and knowledge of the fields of administration and government and serves as the chief executive officer of Qatar Investment Authority.

He has held several high profile positions in Qatar and completed his studies at the Senior Army War College, Carlisle Barracks in the United States of America.

Qatar Rail
Saad Al Muhannadi, CEO

In July 2011, Qatar Railways Company (QRail) announced the appointment of Eng. Saad Ahmed Ibrahim Al Mohannadi as the company’s new CEO, as it ramped up operations in preparation for the Qatar Integrated Railways Project in line with Qatar’s 2030 National Vision and the 2022 World Cup milestone.

Eng. Al Mohannadi was previously the Director of Technical Affairs at Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation, and has an extensive background with 15 years’ experience managing large-scale urban planning and development projects in the fields of power generation and transmission.

QRail will manage the development of the West Bay People Mover, Lusail City’s Light-Rail Transit system, and the integrated Qatar Railways Project, which will incorporate a metro system, long-distance passenger travel, and freight transport at a cost of QAR130 billion.

Within Doha itself, the 212 km railway network will be a driverless metro system, linked into a larger integrated scheme the milestone of the World Cup. Qrail is in charge of the envisaged high-speed 350km/h rail network that will mainly link into Bahrain and down into Saudi Arabia.

The company will then oversee the management, operation and maintenance of the country’s rail network when it is completed around 2026, at earliest expectations.

Qatar Diar
Khaled Al Sayed, group CEO

Engineer Khalid Mohammed Ibrahim Al Sayed serves as group chief executive officer at Qatari Diar –one of the world’s fast growing development companies – the real estate development arm of the sovereign wealth fund Qatar Investment Authority. Qatari Diar was entrusted to support Qatar’s growing economy and to coordinate the country’s real estate development priorities.

Lusail City was the company’s first project, with the establishment of the Lusail Real Estate Development Company in 2008 and in November 2009, Qatari established the Qatar Railways Development Company, to bring the region’s first fully integrated railway system to life.

Throughout his career, his reputation and expertise in business development and project management led to his appointment in a number of senior management positions at the Occidental Oil & Gas Corporation and Shell EP International Ltd.

Al Sayed holds a Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering from the University of South Alabama, USA.

As of January 2012, Qatari Diar is capitalised at $4 billion and has more than 49 projects under development or planning in Qatar and in 29 countries around the world with a combined value of over $35 billion.

Supreme Committee
Hassan al Thawadi, director general

Hassan Al Thawadi holds the position of Secretary General of the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee (Q2022SC), the organisation responsible for coordinating readiness for the 2022 World Cup. His March 2011 appointment follows on from his role as CEO of the winning Bid Committee that for the first time brought the FIFA venue to the Middle East.

Al Thawadi is also General Counsel at Qatar Investment Authority and Qatar Holding.

Though the final number of stadia is still not determined but likely to be 8, the Q2022SC is currently overseeing the building of needed infrastructure related to five stadiums which are at different stages of construction.

Al Bayt Stadium at Al Khor City is a 60,000-seat stadium named for Bayt Al Sha’ar, a tent traditionally used by nomadic peoples in Qatar.

Al Wakrah is a 40,000-seat stadium that pays homage to Qatar’s seafaring traditions and is surrounded by a 580,000m2 community precinct.

The 40,000-seat Khalifa stadium is a renovation project and the site of the Aspire Zone, where Qatar’s 2022 squad are training.

Rounding up the list are the Qatar Foundation’s 40,0000-seat Stadium at Education City within a completed Health & Wellness Precinct and finally the 40,000-seat Al Rayyan Stadium and Precinct, which will be built on the site of Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium.


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