Gabr: company looking for more development opportunities on Red Sea, area between Luxor and Aswan
CAIRO: Negotiations over changing the ownership structure of Emaar Misr are ongoing and “all scenarios are open, Emaar Misr Chairman Shafik Gabr said Wednesday.
Gabr declined to disclose the details of deliberations taking place between his company, Artoc Group, a 60 percent shareholder, and Dubai-based Emaar Properties, a 40 percent shareholder. Still, he said possible scenarios include acquisition by either side, entrance of a third major stake holder or a stock market float.
The Capital Markets Authority is now considering a proposal submitted by Emaar Misr to evaluate and list company shares. The Egyptian-UAE partnership, established in March, 2005, has launched construction for several major real estate projects including the development of a $10 billion resort in Sidi Abdel Rahman and a $4 billion residential community on the Mokattam Plateau.
“Negotiations are continuing, but more importantly, Emaar Misr is continuing, Gabr said, adding talks have been taking place over the past six months.
In late February, Emaar Misr finalized its purchase of the Sidi Abdel Rahman land plot for LE 1.2 billion after the amount was paid in full to the Holding Company for Tourism earlier in the month. The company also invited prominent government officials, including People’s Assembly Speaker Ahmed Fathi Sorour, to launch the sales center for its Uptown Cairo development in Moqattam despite incomplete construction of the 7,000 square meter facility.
Uptown Cairo, spread over 4 million square meters, will include fully-finished apartments starting at LE 700,000 and villas starting at LE 1.9 million. According to Emaar Misr project plans, the development will house necessary public services such as a school, hospital and police and fire stations and construction is due for completion in 2013.
According to Gabr, Emaar Misr now controls LE 6 billion in assets and is looking for more development opportunities on the Red Sea coast and in the Nile Valley between Luxor and Aswan to capitalize on the recent trend of developing the second home concept in Egypt for Arabs and Europeans.
Emaar Misr is one of several companies to have launched high-end real estate projects in the past two years. Jordan’s Shaheen Group and UAE’s Damac are now developing resorts near Hurghada with investments projected to reach $3 billion and $16 billion, respectively, in addition to Talaat Mostafa Group’s Madinaty, Nile Garden Plaza and San Stefano projects worth more than $12 billion.