JLL appoints John Fekete as consulting head for Middle East & North Africa

28 June 2018

Global real estate advisory and professional services firm JLL have appointed John Fekete as Head of Consulting Services for the Middle East and Africa.

Fekete, who has over 25 years of experience working with leading organisations across the globe, will be tasked with expanding JLL’s business in the Middle Eastern and African regions with a focus on strategic consulting, along with developing the firm’s lines in hotel, retail and corporate consulting services.

JLL’s CEO for the Middle East and Africa, Thierry Delvaux, said of the appointment: “John is a valuable addition to our growing leadership team across the MENA region. He brings unparalleled regional and global consulting intelligence which further strengthens our consulting capabilities and demonstrates our ongoing commitment to evolving our client services to respond to the fast changing market dynamics.”

As an experienced operator in valuation advisory, strategic consulting, project management and landlord and tenant representation, the US-born Fekete has been based in the Middle East for close to decade, most recently as the head of the Global Real Estate Management Division at the Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) in the UAE’s second largest city.John Fekete, Head of Consulting Services - JLLPrior to the three-and-a-half-year stint with ADIB, Fekete spent nearly seven years with Citi in Dubai, before which he was the Vice President for the real estate line of the financial services firm in Moscow – overseeing operations in Central and Eastern Europe. Originally, Fekete served with JLL rival firm Colliers International for six years as a Managing Director in Hungary – with further MD roles in Romania and the Ukraine – before switching to JLL’s Budapest office for his first stint with the firm in 1998.

While at ADIB, Fekete was also a member of the bank’s Committee for Sustainability and Social Responsibility, and in addition is a member of Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors – the world’s foremost professional body for qualifications and standards in land, property, infrastructure and construction. In his earlier capacity as head of EMEA for Citigroup, Fekete was responsible for the real estate transactions and project and facility management of 500+ locations with an annual operating budget of over $500 million.

Fekete will now oversee the consulting services line for a firm which has over 600 internationally qualified professionals across offices in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah and Al Khobar, in addition to locations in Cairo and further afield in Casablanca, Johannesburg, Lagos and Nairobi. Altogether, JLL has some 80,000 plus staff worldwide, spread across almost 300 international offices – pulling in global revenues closing on $8 billion last year.

In other recent industry news, the UK advisory Savills has taken oven Cluttons Middle East business.  

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Carlos Ghosn's daughters get their career starts in strategy consulting

16 April 2019

With the Ghosn affair taking yet another twist, this time concerning allegations in Oman, the world’s media remains gripped.

A highly celebrated figure in Lebanon, the case of ex-Nissan and now ex-Renault head Carlos Ghosn has captivated the media round the world, with his re-arrest and detainment in Japan on further embezzlement charges last week – this time concerning allegations in Oman – delivering the latest twist in the saga. For his part, Ghosn continues to deny the charges, labeling the latest allegations of financial impropriety as “outrageous and arbitrary”.

Much of the media fascination stems from Ghosn’s remarkable story. Born to Lebanese immigrants in Brazil, Ghosn spent much of his youth in Lebanon before moving to Paris to pursue an engineering degree – and in almost no time arriving at the very top of the global automotive industry as a feted turn-around specialist, having rescued both Renault and Nissan from probable ruin. The other factor; a cultivated lifestyle of celebrity glamour.

Front and centre in that image was Ghosn’s young family, including a son Anthony and three daughters – Caroline, Maya and Nadine – who have all grown into their own spotlight in the international business and entrepreneurial worlds. And in line with that A-list background, all three of his daughters got their career starts at the crème de la crème of the strategy and management consulting world; prestigious MBB firms McKinsey & Company and BCG.The Ghosn family affair with the international consulting sector  The eldest Ghosn daughter, Caroline, joined McKinsey in 2007 following a BA in International Relations at Stamford University – before founding professional career network Levo in 2011 with three of her McKinsey associates. Her husband, Nicholas Flanders, CEO and co-founder of carbon reduction tech-company Opus 12, (and former COO of Levo), is likewise an alumnus of McKinsey – serving for three and a half years alongside Ghosn in the firm’s New York office.

Carlos Ghosn’s second daughter got her start at Boston Consulting Group.  A regonised name in luxury fashion as the founder and creative director of Nadine Ghosn Fine Jewelry, her brand counts and Beyoncé and the recently deceased fashion icon Karl Largerfeld among its celebrity clientele. At BCG, Nadine, who also graduated Stamford, served as an associate in the firm’s luxury and consumer goods practice before joining a management programme at Hermès.

Like her eldest sister, Ghosn’s youngest daughter Maya joined McKinsey’s New York office – spending over three years there as an engagement manager before departing in 2016. Maya is now Manager, Housing Affordability for the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, founded by Mark Zuckerberg and Pricilla Chan to promote social equality. Incidentally, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, a former McKinsey consultant, has been a mentor to Caroline and also founded, where Maya first started out as an intern.

Carlos Ghosn’s son Anthony – who has now been embroiled in his father’s affair with accusations of money being funneled via Oman toward his financial services start-up, Shogun (where he is CEO but has not been accused of any direct involvement) – didn’t get his break at an MBB, but his step-brother, Anthony Marshi, the son of Carlos Ghosn’s second wife Carole Nahas, is a partner with BCG in New York according to French newspaper Le Figaro.