‘Visionary’ UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim dies

Majid Al Futtaim, left, with Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed. (Wikimedia Commons)
Majid Al Futtaim, left, with Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed. (Wikimedia Commons)
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Updated 17 December 2021

‘Visionary’ UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim dies

Majid Al Futtaim, left, with Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed. (Wikimedia Commons)
  • His death was announced by the company he founded in 1992 and which bears his name

DUBAI: UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim has died, it has been announced.

His death was announced by the company he founded in 1992 and which bears his name, Majid Al Futtaim Group.

It operates in 13 countries across the Middle East and North Africa, and has three main subsidiaries: Majid Al Futtaim Retail, Majid Al Futtaim Ventures, and Majid Al Futtaim Properties.

The company he founded paid tribute to him on Twitter.

Alain Bejjani, CEO of the Majid Al Futtaim Group, also paid tribute to the late businessman.

“Mr. Majid was a visionary entrepreneur and a truly exceptional man who transformed the retailing experience both here in the UAE and more widely across the region,” he posted on Twitter. “His extraordinary foresight and clarity of purpose not only set our company on the path to success, but greatly contributed towards the UAE’s global reputation for innovation and excellence.”

He continued: “His leadership was marked not only by his clear sense of purpose and unwavering vision, but also his acute business acumen and understanding of how to bring happiness and great moments to his community and, in doing so transform our region.

“The strength and drive of his leadership has been an inspiration to many, myself included. Each one of us will carry that legacy forward through our company and culture.

“Together, with boldness and passion, we shall continue creating happiness for our customers, communities and each other as we deliver on Mr. Majid’s simple, powerful wish - great moments for everyone, everyday.

“His passing is a tragic loss for our company, our communities and our region, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones during this difficult time. May God rest his soul,” added.

 


Nasdaq-listed Anghami's revenue jumps 29% boosted by collaboration with Arab artist Amr Diab

Nasdaq-listed Anghami's revenue jumps 29% boosted by collaboration with Arab artist Amr Diab
Updated 13 sec ago

Nasdaq-listed Anghami's revenue jumps 29% boosted by collaboration with Arab artist Amr Diab

Nasdaq-listed Anghami's revenue jumps 29% boosted by collaboration with Arab artist Amr Diab

RIYADH: A collaboration with Egyptian artist Amr Diab, who has over 1.2 billion streams on the platform, pushed Abu Dhabi’s streaming platform, Anghami Inc. to record higher revenues and user growth for the first half of the year. 

The Nasdaq-listed platform reported a 29 percent jump in revenues to $21.1  million in the first six months of 2022, while its first-half active users jumped 46 percent to reach 19.5 million, it said in a statement.

Its monthly paying subscribers increased 41 percent year-on-year, driven by improved customer retention.

Angamis began the year by partnering with Rotana Music, one of Arab music's premier labels, and with Saudi media company MBC Group, one of the Middle East and North Africa region's largest.

On July 5, Anghami completed the acquisition of Spotlight Events, which creates and manages events and concerts in the MENA, further strengthening its position.


TASI settles flat amid uncertainty over oil prices, higher inflation: Closing bell

TASI settles flat amid uncertainty over oil prices, higher inflation: Closing bell
Updated 9 min 2 sec ago

TASI settles flat amid uncertainty over oil prices, higher inflation: Closing bell

TASI settles flat amid uncertainty over oil prices, higher inflation: Closing bell

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index settled flat on Tuesday’s trading session, as investors scramble to assess the impact of declining energy prices and higher inflation on the index

The Tadawul All Share Index ended the session flat at 12,545, while the parallel market, Nomu, edged 0.34 percent lower to finish at 22,034.

In the energy market, Brent crude reached $95.55 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate declined to $90.14 a barrel, as of 3:24 p.m. Saudi time.

The country’s biggest lender Saudi National Bank increased 0.55 percent, while the Saudi British Bank decreased 0.35 percent.

Saudi Aramco lost 1.61 percent, despite achieving its highest quarterly profit since going public in 2019 with SR182 billion ($48.4 billion), a 90 percent jump over analysts’ expectations.

Dallah Healthcare Co. edged up 0.85 percent, after posting a 52 percent gain in profit during the first half of 2022, reaching SR152 million.

KEIR International fell 1.92 percent, after it partnered with US-based Quadratics Development to deploy its eco-friendly building system and technology in Saudi Arabia

Qassim Cement Co. dropped 2.45 percent, after reporting a 73 percent decline in first-half profits to SR54 million.

Al-Etihad Cooperative Insurance Co. shed 1.45 percent after its profits dropped 93 percent to SR2 million in the first half.

Abo Moati for Bookstores Co. rose 0.68 percent, following a 125 percent profit surge to SR4.3 million for the second quarter of 2022.

The Saudi Industrial Development Co. edged down 1.23 percent, after its losses widened by 88 percent to SR11 million during the first half.

Al Kathiri Holding Co. declined 2.71 percent, after it turned into losses of SR5.5 million in the first half of 2022.

 


Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa
Updated 51 min 28 sec ago

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

RIYADH: Uber has appointed Frans Hiemstra as the new regional general manager for the Middle East and Africa region.

Based in Dubai, Frans will hold the responsibility to lead the next phase of growth for Uber’s ride-sharing business across the region, which spans 15 countries, according to a statement.

He will aid in identifying areas of growth, lay down regional priorities, and drive operational excellence to fuel the Uber business, it added. 

Having been with Uber since 2015, most recently Hiemstra was the general manager of the Sub-Saharan Africa region. 

“I’m honored to be tasked with leading the Middle East & Africa region as we focus our efforts on growing our shared mobility business, committing to our sustainability goals, and creating more earnings opportunities for drivers and couriers who use the Uber app,” Hiemstra said.


UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth
Updated 16 August 2022

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

DUBAI: Peninsula Real Estate Management Limited has acquired 17 leased warehouse buildings at the AL MARKAZ Industrial Development from Waha Capital, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Waha Land, for 555 million dirhams ($151 million), according to a statement.

AL MARKAZ is a mixed-use industrial development developed by Waha Land in Al Dhafra, 35 km west of Abu Dhabi. It features Grade “A” industrial and logistic facilities and first-class infrastructure, the statement said.

Under the terms of the agreement, the two parties are expected to close the all-cash deal by the end of 2022.

Peninsula CEO James Gallon said in a statement: “This acquisition is one of a number of transactions that Peninsula will be announcing in the months ahead, as we continue to build a portfolio with diversified and highly visible cash flows.”

Along with the five plots that make up 362,000 sq. m, Peninsula has also agreed to purchase an additional 136,000 sq. m of industrial properties currently under development by Waha Land, with leasing expected to begin in the third quarter of 2023 after construction is completed.

Waha Land will continue to develop its remaining land bank assets following the sale. AL MARKAZ’s land and built assets will also continue to be developed, leased, and monetized through Waha Land’s comprehensive asset development and management capabilities.

Aleph Hospitality enters Congo and creates job opportunities

Dubai-based Aleph Hospitality signed a management contract with Congo-based Sokerico Group to operate Kertel Suites in Kinshasa, according to a statement.

The boutique property is set to open in the first quarter of 2023, setting a new benchmark for the hospitality sector in Kinshasa. Across eight African countries, Aleph Hospitality now operates 12 properties, the statement said.

Founder and Managing Director of Aleph Hospitality, Bani Haddad, said: “It’s an interesting time to secure a presence in the heart of Africa, as the Democratic Republic of the Congo is currently investing in the hospitality sector, restoring historical sites and strengthening sustainability within their ecosystem.”

According to Ritesh Hemnani and Kenny Rawtani, owners of Sokerico Group and developers of the project, Kertel Suites will create vast employment opportunities for Congolese residents as part of Aleph’s rapidly growing hospitality group.

Dubai’s rental growth, highest level since May 2014: CBRE 

CBRE’s August 2022 Dubai Residential Market Snapshot shows that Dubai’s residential market recorded 6,524 transactions in July 2022, up 58 percent.

Off-plan sales increased by 59 percent and secondary market sales by 57.1 percent during this period. While the total volume of transactions reached 45,793, a record high since 2009, the report said.

In the year to July 2022, the average price increased by 9.9 percent. During this period, average apartment prices increased by 8.7 percent and average villa prices increased by 17.8 percent, the report added.

In July 2022, the average apartment price in Dubai was 1,114 dirhams ($303) per square foot, while the average villa price was 1,335 dirhams per square foot.

In comparison to late 2014 highs, these rates per square foot are 25.1 percent and 7.6 percent lower, respectively.


China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant
Updated 16 August 2022

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

RIYADH: China’s blue-chip index edged lower on Tuesday on worries about COVID-19 flare-ups and slowing economic growth, although property stocks jumped on news of policy support.

The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.2 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC gained 0.1 percent.

The Hang Seng index fell 1.1 percent, while the China Enterprises Index lost 1.3 percent.

Toyota suspends operations

Toyota Motor Corp. suspended operations at its Sichuan plant in China because of a power shortage, the Kyodo News reported on Tuesday.

The local authority has ordered the automaker to suspend operations, the report said.

Tsingshan mulls selling Indonesian assets 

China’s stainless steel and nickel giant, Tsingshan Holding Group is considering selling some of its assets in Indonesia to China Baowu Steel Group, the world’s top steel producer, sources said.

Tsingshan has in recent years been investing heavily in Indonesia, turning the nickel-rich Southeast Asian nation into a hub of stainless steel and nickel production, and a possible top supplier of electric vehicle battery chemicals.

“(It’s) still under discussion,” a Tsingshan official said, referring to the possible sale, without elaborating.

Two other sources at Baowu confirmed the talks, with one saying that the acquisition would be part of the Chinese state-controlled steel firm’s long-term goal to expand in the stainless steel sector, especially in Southeast Asia.

It would also be in Baowu’s interests to expand into nickel, most of which is used in making stainless steel.

“Our layout in the nickel industry is quite limited, and it is now too late to buy resources and invest a large amount of money to build factories,” said a second source at Baowu.

 

(With input from Reuters)