Al-Futtaim Group and Emaar yesterday announced an initial intention to enter into a EGP 5 billion joint venture (JV) agreement to develop Cairo Gate, the largest lifestyle and entertainment development on an EmaarMisr property of 160 acres of land on the Cairo- Alexandria desert highway.
The two UAE-based international real estate giants claim “Cairo Gate will not only cater to discerning shoppers from Egypt and the world over, but also to those who appreciate a trendy lifestyle that has come of age.” While the mega shopping mall will be the centerpiece of the development, Cairo Gate will be complemented by an office park with a luxury hotel, schools, medical facilities and residences ranging from townhouses to villas and apartments.
When finalised, Al-Futtaim Group and Emaar believe the JV agreement will mark a new milestone in the real estate industry as the region’s two mega developers, who already have large developments in Egypt and contribute significantly towards the growing Egyptian economy, have come together to commit both expertise and investment to the local Egyptian market.
Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties PJSC, said, “we are proud of this partnership which will add tremendous value to the real estate and retail industry sectors at large and we look forward to working together with Al-Futtaim Group and realising the full potential of this venture.”
Commenting on the prospects of the Egyptian market, he added, “as we boost our continued development portfolio in the Egyptian market we also demonstrate our belief in Egypt, its economy and its people”.
The first phase of Cairo Gate development will comprise a mall with a gross leasable area of 120,000 m2, and will be anchored by Al-Futtaim’s retail brands such as IKEA, Marks & Spencer, Toys “R” Us, ACE, Intersport, Guess, Esprit and other brands as well as restaurants, cafes and leisure outlets with a strong outdoor theme.
Omar Al-Futtaim. vice chairman and group CEO said, “this JV represents a significant and long-term partnership between Al-Futtaim Group and Emaar who are on a new path for growth in Egypt. The agreement demonstrates our confidence in the Egyptian economy and will raise Egypt’s profile as a nation focused on innovation, excellence, and dynamic sustainable development in the retail and real estate sectors.
Our Cairo Festival City development is already making strong headway in establishing Egypt as Centrepoint for the North African retail industry. The JV will further demonstrate our firm commitment to not only enhance Egypt’s development, but amplify the country’s leadership positioning within the regional and global economy.”
Al-Futtaim added, “this is clear evidence of our positive view on the Egyptian economy and we are confident of the investor-friendly direction of the Egyptian government especially in resolving any investors’ disputes.”
Cairo Gate has a frontage of one kilometre along the Cairo-Alexandria Desert Road, and will complement the residential, hospitality and commercial components of Emaar Misr’s development. The primary catchment areas including 6 October City and Giza have a population of over six million residents.
Emaar Misr is regarded as one of the largest real estate developers in the Egyptian real estate market, and is one of the most important direct foreign investors with an investment capital of EGP 31.67 billion.
This investment portfolio consists of three mega fully integrated developments, Uptown Cairo, the new heart of Cairo in Mokattam hills; Marassi, one of the largest tourist residential projects on the Mediterranean; and Mivida, the Emaar development in New Cairo, featuring a central park of 30 acres, in addition to 222 acres of small parks and landscape.