12 February 2006
Rasmala Investments Ltd, a regional Investment Bank, and Saeed Ahmed Baghlaf & Partners Holdings Group announced today the establishment of iHilal Baghlaf Development Company.
The high demand for exceptional real estate projects in the GCC markets, especially within the Dubai office real estate market, and the high selling prices and rents as well as the high occupancy rates have encouraged the new company to go into real estate development by cooperating with local and regional consultants of extensive experience in this field. The new company will benefit from the name and expertise of the Baghlaf Group, which has over 30 years of experience and investments worth tens of billions and is considered one of the leading giants in the real estate industry in Saudi and the GCC. It will also benefit from Rasmala’s broad reach and track record of sourcing and managing investments in the region.
iHilal Baghlaf Development Company will be developing its first project in Dubai`s Technology, E-Commerce and Media Free Zone. The 36-storey office tower will have over 1 million square feet of office space and will be sold on a free-hold basis to regional and international corporations.
“We anticipate that our new partnership with Rasmala will enable us to develop distinguished real estate projects in the region. Our partnership started a year ago when we and Al Amoudi Exchange were admitted as shareholders in iHilal Financial Services, Rasmala’s Islamic financial services subsidiary” commented Sheikh Saeed Ahmed Baghlaf.
Mr. Ali Samir al Shihabi, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Rasmala, welcomed the new partnership and said: “We are delighted to have partnered with the Baghlaf Group, a prominent commercial and industrial group in both Saudi and the Gulf. Our first project together is considered to be one of the largest office real estate projects in Dubai from the built-up area perspective, and its construction will commence at the beginning of 2007 and will finish mid 2009.”
Dubai office real estate market is considered to be a prime and promising investment opportunity as the current occupancy rate is almost 99%. Moreover, the many office units due to be delivered within the next three years are not expected to fully meet the high and increasing demand for these units, especially in the free zones.
iHilal Financial Services was appointed as the Investment and Sharia Advisor for the project, to ensure the compliance of the project financing with Sharia. Sharia laws will also govern all aspects of the project’s development and all future investments of the new established company.