Construction Week Power 100: 51-60

CW's inaugural list of the GCC's most powerful people in construction

Power 100, SPECIAL REPORTS
Federico Tauber.
Federico Tauber.
Power 100, SPECIAL REPORTS
Mark Fletcher.
Mark Fletcher.
Kevin Mitchell.
Kevin Mitchell.
Power 100, SPECIAL REPORTS
Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar.
Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar.
Ziad El Chaar.
Ziad El Chaar.
Power 100, SPECIAL REPORTS
Power 100, SPECIAL REPORTS

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51. Federico Tauber President Tameer

Coming in at number 51, Federico Tauber is thought to be particularly powerful in the GCC for his role in leading and driving forward architectural significance and construction innovation.

As president of Tameer Holding, he is responsible for overseeing some of the region’s most unique and iconic projects, well-known in the industry for enhancing skylines and setting new examples of architectural expression, not to mention employing some of the most creative ideas and best technologies in the sector.

One of these projects which Tauber is particularly proud of is the Elite Residence tower in Dubai. Standing tall at 380 metres in a strategic location, and due to be fitted with a ‘crown’ (the unique roof structure), the tower is a symbol of the ‘Elite theme’ that Tameer and Tauber are bringing to the region.

“It will offer one of the most desirable
addresses in Dubai Marina, the city’s
most sought-after residential district,”

Federico Tauber speaking about the
380m Elite Residence Tower project in Dubai.

Next: Khalil Sholy, United Development Company

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52. Khalil Sholy
Managing director
United Development Company

Khalil Sholy has been MD of UDC since its inception in 1999 and the company has quickly become one of Qatar’s leading private sector shareholding companies.

Under Sholy’s leadership, UDC’s investment in long-term projects has contributed to Qatar’s growth while also looking after shareholders’ interests with solid annual returns. The company has an authorised share capital of QR 1.072.5 billion (US $294 million), a market capitalisation of $902m and total assets of $1.1 billion.

Its key areas of interest are projects in infrastructure, energy-intensive industries, downstream hydrocarbons, urban development, construction and environment-related businesses.

Its flagship project is the multi-billion dollar 400 hectare Pearl-Qatar island development for which is was granted freehold title and rights by the Qatari government in 2006. The Pearl-Qatar development will eventually comprise twelve distinct themed districts, each with its own architectural character.

UDC is also behind district cooling company Qatar Cool, a company that produces a combined 600,000 tonnes of refrigeration every year – and has contracts to do so for the next 20 years; Qatar Dredging, and has a 20% stake in Seef Limited, a company that makes Linear Alkyl Benzene (LAB), a hydrocarbon based petrochemical material used for manufacture of detergents.

Next: Ian Clarke, Mott MacDonald Middle East

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53. Ian Clarke
Managing director
Mott MacDonald Middle East

The breadth of Mott MacDonald’s contract successes across many specialist sectors in the Middle East bears testimony to the company’s status as a leading light in GCC construction.

Regional managing director Ian Clarke has steered the company in its competitiveness across projects relating to buildings, water, environment, energy, education, health and transport, and also secured the slot to act as lead designer for all infrastructure for Masdar city. Other projects include Palm Jumeirah monorail in Dubai and Dilmunia Health Island in Bahrain.

This year started with a bang for Clarke as he was elected chair of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering for the Middle East.

It has also won its fair share of consultancy deals, including contracts worth AED90million by Abu Dhabi Distribution Company (ADDC) to provide input to the power in the Central and Western regions of Abu Dhabi, and for the water in the Eastern region.

“We’re drawing on the expertise of our talented
staff to provide a powerful multidisciplinary team that cannot
be matched and will deliver the best world class service.”

Ian Clarke

Next: Mark Fletcher, Bovis Lend Lease

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54. Mark Fletcher
Managing director
Continental Europe, Middle East and Africa
Bovis Lend Lease

As regional managing director of one of the world’s largest project and construction management firms, Mark Fletcher comes in at number 54 on CW’s power list.

Having been in the position for more than four years, responsible for establishing Bovis Lend Lease’s presence in the region, Fletcher has a substantial amount of experience in international construction and project management, and is currently responsible for 150 highly experienced, multi-disciplinary individuals from 30 different countries, working from offices in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat and Manama.

Prior to joining Bovis Lend Lease in 1994, Mark worked for General Electric Company and Balfour Beatty across a wide range of building, transport and infrastructure projects in Sri Lanka, the Bahamas, Egypt, the Caribbean and South America.

It is with Fletcher’s 20 years of dedication to the sector and recent enthusiasm for the Middle Eastern region that the company has successfully won a series of high profile contracts, the most notable being the Dubai Metro.

Now, with a specialist rail group in the region, the firm is focused on major rail projects across the GCC, giving Bovis Lend Lease a key role in GCC infrastructure development. As a one of the founding members of BuildSafe UAE, Fletcher’s division is also recognised for its commitment to incident and injury free construction.

Next: Kevin Mitchell, Buro Happold

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55. Kevin Mitchell
Principal
Buro Happold

Mitchell began his career in the UK with a general MEP engineering consultancy in a broad range of projects, from healthcare to education, spanning large new-builds to very small projects. Mitchell then went into R&D, focusing on technologies such as chilled beams and displacement ventilation.

Mitchell was then introduced to multi-disciplinary engineering and the concept of integrated design, a key component of green building, an area that the Middle East market is focusing on at the moment.

This lead to a stint of healthcare and scientific-type projects for large pharmaceutical companies, such as laboratories, R&D centres and greenfield hospitals in the £200 million bracket.

He subsequently worked in Canada from 2001 to 2005. Mitchell then returned to the UK market as key account manager for various transportation clients, for projects such as runway and lighting system refurbishment at major airports, which posed particular logistical and safety challenges. Three years later he was ready for the next challenge, and took up a position with Buro Happold in Dubai in 2008.

“I guess for all of us in our lifetimes there
are going to be certain career opportunities
and certain hotspots in the world, and for me,
as I am sure for lots of other people, the Middle East
presented an opportunity I could not resist.”

Kevin Mitchell

Next: Isabel Pintado, Godwin Austen Johnson

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56. Isabel Pintado
Associate partner
Godwin Austen Johnson

Named Interior Designer of the Year at the 2009 CID Awards, Isabel Pintado is an associate partner at Godwin Austen Johnson (GAJ), one of the largest and most established UK-headquartered architectural practices in the UAE.

The Spanish designer and honours graduate was invited to launch and develop GAJ’s interior design division in 2005. Since then, she has developed GAJ Interiors into a 20-strong, award-winning design team.

Pintado has worked on a wide range of projects, including Al Farsan restaurant and Dune Pizzeria at the Bab Al Shams Hotel and Resort, the Palm Tree Court Restaurant extension at Jebel Ali Hotel and the Sharjah Museum Café.

Her portfolio also includes palatial residences in Dubai’s Emirates Hills and on The Palm, Jumeirah. Most recently, Pintado and her team have designed a seven-star hotel project in Libya, the Jnan Amar Hotel in Morocco and the City Stars development in Sharm El Sheikh.

“At present, you are getting smaller fees
but the quality of work that you are putting into a project is higher
than ever because you cannot afford for those projects not to run smoothly.”

Isabel Pintado

Next: Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar, Al Shafar Group

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57. Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar
Chairman
Al Shafar Group

The Chairman of Al Shafar General Contracting (ASGC) Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar plays a crucial role in the UAE building industry - Al Shafar General Contracting is the flagship company of Bin Shafar Holding, an ISO 9001 accredited company and a major force within the UAE construction sector.

Bin Shafar was closely involved with the company from the time it was established in 1989, nurturing it through to its present status.

Following through on his entrepreneurial spirit, he established Bin Shafar Holding, which has interests in diversified disciplines across construction and real estate, and more than 20 companies under its umbrella.

Bin Shafar holds a dual Bachelors Degree in Business and Military Administration and started his career in the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces. He retired from active duty in 2001 after 30 years service.

“We have continuously aimed for a truly professional organisation where industry best practice is followed and where quality is not just a compliance issue but our foremost goal.” Mohammed Saif Mohammed Bin Shafar.

Next: Ziad El Chaar, Damac Properties

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58. Ziad El Chaar
General manager
Damac Properties

Born and bred in Lebanon, Ziad El Chaar has spent the last year proving there is still a market for the construction and selling of luxury properties.

As general manager he was central to Damac Properties’ decision in 2008 to halt the announcement of projects – instead looking to deliver on existing plans. By the end of this year, he says, the company would have delivered 4,000 units and 7,000 by the end of the first quarter of next year.

Recently the market has turned further in Damac’s favour, and El Chaar has overseen the company’s flourishing business in Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Lebanon, including a flagship project in the Solidiere area of Beirut.

From November 2009 to July 2010 the company awarded 20 projects with a value of $3.6 billion. A big believer in the long-term strength of Dubai, many of the most eye-catching residential projects built by Damac have been under his stewardship.

“It gives a big boost to credibility all round
that investors can see what they are
paying for and that work is being done.”

Ziad Al Chaar

Next: Ibrahim MohamMed Al Jaidah, Arab Engineering Bureau

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59. Ibrahim MohamMed Al Jaidah
Principal
Arab Engineering Bureau

As director of veteran Arab Engineering Bureau (AEB), Ibrahim Mohammed Al Jaidah has taken the Doha-based firm from half-a-dozen architects in a one-room office to a regional architecture giant with offices in Kuala Lumpur, Manila and Abu Dhabi.

Al Jaidah is an expert in Gulf vernacular, and has published a book about Qatar’s architectural history, while giving regular lectures on the subject to architecture students of the region.

AEB’s niche is in designing embassy buildings, and the firm can take credit for Qatar’s embassies in a host of countries from Morocco to Havana. For all his travelling, however, it is of Qatar that Al Jaidah is most proud.

“In a decade’s time you will be able to take students from any architecture school in the world and show them the most contemporary architecture in the world in Doha. Qatar is going to become an encyclopaedia of architecture,” he said.

Next: Rashim Al Leem, HFZA Director General

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60. Rashid Al Leem
HFZA Director General

As head of the Hamriyah Free Zone Authority, Dr Rashid Al Leem has a lot on his plate. Not only has he been responsible for establishing the Free Zone, but he has also spear-headed the recent expansion of the port to become a more attractive proposition for companies wishing to establish a foothold in the UAE.

This year, Al Leem unveiled AED800m worth of improvements to the Free Zone including the expansion and development of the Hamriyah inner harbour, two new housing developments that designed to accommodate a 9072 labourers, and two roading projects that have added a combined 50kms of new and resealed roads.

“Sharjah has always had a reputation as a logistics centre for the oil and gas industry – a hub for the industry. While that’s important, it’s also important to look at other areas too,” Al Leem said.

“We’ve done our very best to make the Hamriyah Free Zone a great place for international companies to do business. We’ve achieved a lot in a short space of time, and there is more to come,” he added. Expansion work continues, with several projects underway and a number of contracts up for tender.

Next: Tom Bower, WSP

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