Saif Ahmad Al Ghurair
The story of the Al Ghurair Group began in the 1960s when it was founded by the Al Ghurair family, one of Dubai’s most prominent business families.
Saif Ahmad Al Ghurair, the group chairman, began his economic activities in the 1930s when he started pearl diving and trading with his father, before setting up the first cement factory in addition to a flour mill, a sugar refinery and an aluminum smelter.
The group has evolved considerably over the last 40 years and, in the last five in particular, has consolidated its presence and reputation.
The ETA Star group, one of Al Ghurair’s largest divisions, alone employs 75,000 people, or just shy of one percent of the UAE’s total population.
ETA Ascon, its UAE-based contracting firm that has expertise ranging from civil construction to MEP, elevator engineering and FM, has completed projects in excess of $1.4bn.
Since its inception in 1973, Ascon has added projects ranging from Burjuman to the Deira City Centre Hotel to its roster, and as a group, ETA Star has been involved in almost every major project in the UAE, from the Jumeirah Beach Hotel and Dubai Marina to the Dubai International Airport’s Concourse 3, the Dubai Metro Green Line and the fit-out of the Burj Khalifa.
Extending back into the supply chain, ETA Star’s interests include structural steel fabrication, composite aluminium cladding, low voltage switchgear panels, joinery and interiors.
This wide capability allows the group to focus on cost-effective vertical delivery, from design to commissioning.
In a high profile accolade in May 2013, MEP divison ETA Star was recognised by the Qatar Green Building Council, Barwa Real Estate Group and Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation (Kahramaa) for its contribution towards the Passivhaus, Qatar’s first truly sustainable villas development.
Al Ghurair’s involvement on the now test-phase GSAS and LEED-rated concept is set to reduce resource consumption by 50%, is indicative of the continued leadership of the group.