10 of the Best Public Real Estate Companies in MENA
10 of the Best
Public Real Estate
Companies in MENA
Dr. Ehsan Bayat
10 of the Best Public Real Estate
Companies in MENA
• Forbes Middle East produces some of the most interesting and valuable
analyses of the Gulf Cooperation Council economy. Reports range from ranking
the top Arab business women of the year to evaluating the potential of startup
companies in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In 2016, Forbes hosted an event
celebrating the ongoing success of the Middle East real estate industry.
• Highlighting the event was the release of a list of the top 100 real estate firms
and consultants in the Middle East, the first ranking of its kind from Forbes.
Remarking on the latest trends in regional property development, Forbes
Middle East Editor in Chief Khuloud Al Omian observed that the market focus
has transitioned to buyers from the middle class, whereas developers
previously placed emphasis on the luxury segment.
• In general, developers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region that
are willing to diversify their portfolios have achieved the greatest degree of
success, and this requires flexibility with regard to demand. At the forefront of
these companies are Forbes Middle East’s top 10 public real estate companies.
Read on to learn more about them.
1. Emaar Properties
• For nearly 20 years, Emaar Properties has maintained a commitment to
developing quality real estate in the UAE and around the world. The
company portfolio includes such landmarks as the Burj Khalifa, the Armani
Hotel Dubai, and the emerging Opera District in Dubai. Emaar has a large
assortment of residential developments as well, and the firm aims to build
communities fully integrated with modern lifestyle amenities.
2. DAMAC Properties
• DAMAC Properties was formed in 2002 in Dubai, and the real estate
developer now has a presence in the UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and
Lebanon. As of June 2016, the firm had more than 16,000 delivered units
and another 44,000 under construction. DAMAC has partnered with FENDI,
Versace, and many other notable brand names to produce valuable
properties for consumers.
3. Aldar Properties
• Also based in the UAE, Aldar Properties PJSC focuses on developing
residential and commercial properties. The company merged with Sorouh
Real Estate PJSC in 2013, and the transaction resulted in a more diverse
and valuable portfolio. Aldar Properties’ headquarters, with its circular
design, is one of the more distinct buildings in the region, and the
company’s other notable projects include the Al Bandar island development
as well as The Gate Towers and the Arc.
4. Barwa Real Estate
• Barwa Real Estate launched its operations in 2006, and the Qatar-based
company does business nationally and internationally. Between 2014 and
2015, Barwa leaders guided a company restructuring effort that decreased
debt and generated capital to pursue a series of projects. Among other
initiatives this year, the firm will finish the residential properties in the Al
Khor community and launch the Mustawdaat development.
5. Ezdan Holding Group
• Formerly known as the Thani Bin Abdullah Housing Group, the Ezdan
Holding Group has maintained a presence in Qatar since the 1960s. The
firm has assisted the Qatari government by building residential housing and
completing construction work in preparation for the 2006 Asian Games.
Today, Ezdan owns nearly 20,000 residential units, as well as several luxury
hotels and a growing retail portfolio.
6. Jabal Omar Development Company
• Founded in 2006, Jabal Omar Development Company (JODC) is a high-
performing real estate company located in Saudi Arabia. The firm focuses
on hotel and hospitality developments that serve visitors to the Grand
Mosque in Makkah, and it has partnered with Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, and
Conrad to build five-star and four-star properties. Altogether, Jabal Omar
properties can accommodate as many as 100,000 guests.
7. United Development Company
• The United Development Company QSC (UDC) was established in 1999, and
it occupies a leading position in the Qatari market. UDC maintains active
investments across a broad range of industries, from hydrocarbon
downstream manufacturing to real estate. The Pearl-Qatar is the
company’s most notable development. A mixed-use island community
located off of West Bay in Doha, the development includes residential,
retail, and hospitality properties.
8. Talaat Moustafa Group Holding
• For more than 35 years, Talaat Moustafa Group (TMG) Holding has
developed residential and hospitality real estate in Egypt. The firm has
focused on designing communities for middle and upper class consumers,
and some examples of their success include the Madinaty project and Al
Rehab City. In the hotel and resorts sector, TMG has built several properties
in partnership with the Four Seasons brand.
9. Dar Al-Arkan Real Estate Development
• The Dar Al-Arkan Real Estate Development Company (DAAR) was created
as a collaborative effort between several prominent families in Saudi
Arabia. Through the years, the company has evolved in stages, starting with
a focus on developing basic infrastructure and moving more toward the
residential market. DAAR now aims to set the standard for master-planned
10. Douja Promotion Group Addoha
• Douja Promotion Group Addoha is the second North Africa-based company
to make the list. Located in Morocco, the firm concentrates on real estate
development and marketing. It primarily develops commercial and
residential properties, and its asset portfolio also includes undeveloped