Many people are talking about sustainability, and this is not a fancy thing—it is a reality. The concept of green is for the health of future generations and for the country's environment. We are lucky that the government supports sustainability. If we put our heads together, we will not reach the disaster scenario that some countries have experienced. If you live in a clear and nice environment, it is different than if you live with pollution; people are affected by this. In facilities management, we are dealing with sustainability by adding value to our clients. We advise them on how to reduce electricity and water consumption, for example. We are fortunate in that we maintain the majority of the mosques in Dubai. There are more than 240 mosques in Dubai. We also have many five-star hotels and many high villas in our portfolio. What I am trying to do is create an easy and effective method to maintain mosques. It is difficult to upgrade mosques to transform them into “five-star" locations. The type of carpet, the type of curtains, what type of AC we use, what types of perfumes we use inside, and the water temperature are all related to this.
Jan. 12, 2015
Jamal Abdulla Lootah
General Manager, COFELY BESIX Facility Management Middle East
As a facilities management operation, we look after some quite large and world-renowned buildings. We work for clients like Emaar and Aldar, with which we deliver technical expertise. Through this, we build confidence with our clients. We have built a reputation where, if there is a challenging environment, we position ourselves in a market where the service we provide supports the business specifically, rather than selling identical products to everyone. It is molded to our customer base, and we don't simply customize a package services, but deliver precisely what the customer asks for. We are mobilizing a project in Abu Dhabi, which is another iconic building, as well as the Dubai Mall. We also have infrastructure projects where we support the municipality's assets, such as pumping stations and distribution networks consisting of highly technical equipment. We expect that the market, over the coming year, will see a major push on energy efficiency. There is also going to be a push in sustainable business, not necessarily in the green sense, but functioning in a business activities sense that are sustainable for the long run. We are keen to develop solutions and models where we can support customers in the long term through building confidence in the relationship over cost and the bottom line.
Navin M. Valrani
CEO, Al Shirawi Facilities Management
We are the largest local, private facilities management company in the UAE. The key words here being: private and local. As far as the major players in the facility management industry are concerned, there are a few semi-government owned facility management companies. And then there are a few other players that are a part of international joint ventures. Al Shirawi FM is a purely local, private company that competes with these players and often wins. Today, our portfolio of clients is the second to none. We look after the entire Dubai Industrial City, which is the largest smart city in Dubai in terms geographical area (over 50 square kilometers). It is comprised of offices, warehouses, and labor accommodation. We look after varied services there, including the road infrastructure. We also manage what is known as the Business Village, which is where Dubai SME's headquarters is located. It is also where the Department of Economic Development (DED) is located. In addition to those, almost every AZADEA store in the Emirates is looked after by our firm. We have a significant retail portfolio. Although some of our competitors actually have the advantage of being connected to mall developers, we look after the stores in the malls. That truly is a testament to our capabilities.