Chestertons sells $166m property to MENA investors

Middle East investors accounted for over 70% of Chestertons’ London property sales and almost 40% of its UAE property sales in 2015

Declan McNaughton (above) says Chestertons is looking to expand its footprint in the Gulf with the addition of new offices in Dubai and Ajman, UAE.
Declan McNaughton (above) says Chestertons is looking to expand its footprint in the Gulf with the addition of new offices in Dubai and Ajman, UAE.

Chestertons closed $166m (AED610m) worth of property sales on behalf of Middle East and North Africa (MENA) investors in 2015.

The international property agency has revealed that Middle Eastern investors accounted for over 70% of its total London property sales, and nearly 40% of UAE property sales.

In light of its 2015 performance, Chestertons MENA is looking to expand its regional footprint with additional offices in Dubai and Ajman, UAE.

Commenting on last year’s sales figures, Declan McNaughton, managing director UAE of Chestertons MENA, said: “London has long been a favoured destination for investors from the Middle East region. It is a mature, well-regulated market with a solid track record for capital appreciation, and many Middle East investors are familiar with London, visiting on a regular basis.”

In terms of UK real estate, investors from Kuwait topped Chestertons’ GCC list accounting for 21% of London sales. Saudi Arabian buyers came in second with 17%, followed by investors from Qatar (10%), and Bahrain (7%). The remainder of the agency’s buyers was made up of nationals from the UK, Switzerland, and Iran.

In addition to London property sales, Chesterton’s Dubai office sold units worth $63.2m (AED232m) in the UAE during 2015, with almost 40% of total sales value coming from Middle Eastern investors. Emirati buyers topped the nationality breakdown for the UAE, followed by Indian (15%) and UK (10%) nationals. Investors from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Lebanon accounted for single-digit percentage contributions.

Since the establishment of its first GCC office in Abu Dhabi in 2008, Chestertons MENA has grown its regional presence with headquarters in Dubai, and branches in Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

“Due to increased investor appetite, our focus moving forward is to enlarge our regional footprint in key locations across the Gulf, starting with the addition of a third Dubai office located in the Al Barsha area, and one in Ajman, [UAE]” McNaughton revealed.

Chestertons’ new Al Barsha office will be staffed by a 50-strong team of property and valuation experts approved by Dubai’s Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA).

As well as property and corporate valuation and management services, Chestertons MENA will continue to offer research and advisory expertise covering feasibility studies, project development consultancy, market research, and investment and disposal strategies across the region.

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