Consulting giants McKinsey & Company get new landlord in Abu Dhabi

09 February 2018

Global management consulting giant McKinsey & Company is set for a new landlord in Abu Dhabi, with Aldar Properties picking up its International Tower locale.

Real estate development and management firm Aldar Properties has finalised the paperwork on its $179 million purchase of the International Tower building in Abu Dhabi’s Gate district, adding 39,000 square meters of premium commercial rental space to its existing portfolio.

The company expects the acquisition to immediately contribute to its net operating income, citing the property’s “strong mix of existing tenants and robust occupancy.” Among its current key tenants are the defence and aerospace agency BAE Systems and the engineering consultancy AECOM, along with global strategy and management consulting powerhouse McKinsey & Company.

Operating in the Middle East since 1957, McKinsey has over 400 regional consultants across its offices in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Egypt and the UAE, the latter including locales in both Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Consulting giants McKinsey & Company get new landlord in Abu DhabiThe company says of its Abu Dhabi and the UAE enterprise: “Abu Dhabi is in the midst of rapid growth and transformation. McKinsey is proud to be working with the Emirate’s leadership and key decision-makers on critical elements of its Economic Vision 2030 – shaping bold new investment strategies, accelerating the growth of key sectors such as energy and infrastructure, and strengthening education and health care.”

Local operations

McKinsey’s Abu Dhabi office is guided by company senior partners, Ibrahim El-Husseini, Enrico Benni and Nicklas Garemo – with Garemo also serving as regional leader of the firm’s Operations Practice. The partners between them have over 75 years of senior consulting experience, with; El- Husseini joining McKinsey in 2012 fresh from a 17-year stint with Booz & Company in Beirut; Benni being recruited in 2000 following five years at PwC after stating out at Accenture in 1992, and; Garemo crossing to McKinsey in 1996 after getting his break with Arthur D. Little two years earlier.

Together the partners serve their clients in a range of areas, including El-Husseieni in the provision of operational and strategic advice to the energy and resources sector, Benni on business-technology issues such as sourcing, customer relationship management and global integration of IT systems, and Garemo in the field of infrastructure and engineering with a specialty in performance improvement for engineering and construction organisations, along with, as it were, real estate development firms.

Regionally, McKinsey has completed over 2000 projects in the Middle East since 2010, and recently expanded its local footprint with the acquisition of Saudi Arabian consultancy Elixir. The company has also been brought in by the government of Lebanon to assist in the country’s economic restructuring project.

Meanwhile in other local property news, global real estate consulting firm CBRE has been appointed the leasing and retail lead for Abu Dhabi’s new high-concept ‘Medical Mall’ project by Al Falah Holdings.

Prop-tech company Estater launches in Bahrain in country-first

03 April 2019

Bahrain has welcomed the arrival of Estater – said to be the Kingdom’s first dedicated Prop-Tech company.

The Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) has celebrated the Kingdom’s selection as the regional hub for Indian-origin Prop-Tech company Estater, said to be the first such entry in the country. Noted in a recent KPMG report as having the most liberalised and competitive ICT sector in the GCC, the Kingdom continues to advance its growing reputation as a regional technology hub.

“Estater is delighted to select Bahrain as a hub for its regional operations,” said Estater’s Managing Director Sanjay Goyal. “A favourable business environment for international investors coupled with good regional connectivity makes Bahrain an ideal choice for us. Real estate value chain in the region is up for several exciting changes and we promise Estater will be one of the change agents.”

With further operations in India and Kuwait, the real estate advisory’s Geo Estater platform uses GIS (Geographic Information Systems) mapping technology to provide market intelligence for developers, investors and financiers across the commercial, industrial, residential, retail and hospitality segments, with the firm claiming to have carried out more than 250 research studies in its ten years to date.Prop-tech company Estater launches in Bahrain in country-firstSlow to embrace technological innovation compared to other industries, the real estate PropTech segment (which together with geospatial data tools includes rapidly emerging technologies such as IoT-powered smart-building, drones, augmented reality, 3D printing and laser scanning) is now booming, with another KPMG survey finding that 86 percent of industry respondents accept that digital technology would have an least somewhat significant impact on the market.

“Digital innovation is progressing in Bahrain, and is cutting across sectors and domains like never before,” said EDB Director of Real Estate Investment Development at Bahrain Ali Murtaza. “We are pleased to welcome Estater, the first proptech company to set up in Bahrain, and look forward to the transformation it will bring to the real estate sector, which is one of the top performers in our economy.”

Citing the Kingdom’s business development support network via agencies such as the EDB, StartUp Bahrain and Tamkeen, and its vibrant startup ecosystem of over 90 companies – punctuated by the launch of fintech hub Bahrain Fintech Bay at the beginning of last year – Murtaza adds of Estater’s entry; “Their choice to expand into our growing ecosystem reinforces Bahrain’s position as a hub for startups and for proptech firms especially.”