The Business Year

Robert Hofmann, CEO & Co-Founder of Al-Tahaluf

SAUDI ARABIA - Real Estate & Construction

Robert Hofmann

CEO & Co-Founder, Al-Tahaluf

Bio

Robert Hofmann is a real estate development executive with more than 30 years of home building experience in the US and MENA. He is the CEO & Co-Founder of Al-Tahaluf, known as the largest Saudi American homebuilding and real estate development company. As CEO, Hofmann provides the overall company vision and leadership to one of the most innovative affordable housing developers in the Saudi Arabia. He is responsible for all operations at Al-Tahaluf, including but not limited to strategic planning, company P&L, organizational development, along with an active role in the details of design, value engineering, and enhancing sales and marketing.

“With over 2,500 homes built or under construction in Saudi Arabia in our history, we are the first choice when it comes to developing world-class communities.”

Robert Hofmann, CEO & Co-Founder of Al-Tahaluf, talks to TBY about the dynamics of the country’s housing sector, innovation, and goals for the year to come.

Can you give us an overview of the dynamics shaping the local housing sector?

Robert Hofmann: The Saudi housing market has been strong for the past few years. When Vision 2030 was announced in 2016, the industry transformed, along with the home financing business. Access to affordable mortgages for homebuyers has significantly changed for the positive. The other pillar is large scale housing projects: in the last few years, the entire process for selling and building at a high production rate has become more streamlined. With that said, there is still a need of close to 1 million new homes in the Kingdom. There is great opportunity for Al-Tahaluf to continue to grow along with new developers entering the market.

How do you distinguish yourself from the competition?

Robert Hofmann: Our mission it to provide our customers with high-quality homes at international standards and the best home ownership experience in Saudi Arabia. Al Tahaluf Real Estate brings the perfect blend of expertise, experience and creative imagination to the table. With over 150 years of combined history in residential housing and land development, Al Tahaluf Real Estate was born by merging the expertise and legacies of Hamad Bin Saedan Company and K. Hovnanian Homes (US). Known as the first SAGIA-registered international residential developer in the Kingdom, Al-Tahaluf and our partners have built over 300,000 incredible homes globally and developed over 120 million sqm of real estate across Saudi Arabia. Our team of over 100 associates is passionate about building inspirational homes that enrich lives. With exceptional industry experience, they can design, develop, cost manage, coordinate project management and procurement, and manage the sales and marketing of all our homes in-house. With over 2,500 homes built or under construction in Saudi Arabia in our history, we are the first choice when it comes to developing world-class communities. Since our launch, we have grown significantly thanks to years of learning, investment, and scaling. Our success has been a careful process of finding a winning formula when it comes to launching and delivering projects that are both on time and on budget. We also pride ourselves on our ability to invest significantly in people, technology, and systems to ensure we have solid foundations in place to operate seamlessly.

What is the current state of innovation and quality in the Kingdom?

Robert Hofmann: The quality of residential construction and methodologies continues to improve. The engineering and technology being put into new homes continues to improve. We were perhaps one of the first—if not the first—to introduce the tilt up wall and prefabricated construction for a large-scale residential project. We built 2,229 homes in Northern Riyadh in under three years using innovative construction technology. We were starting and finishing eight homes a day and using even flow production that we perfected over the past 20 years in the US market and implemented in the Kingdom. Homebuyers are becoming more informed and educated about home construction in the Kingdom. One thing we are most proud of is the growth of our Saudi associates and the empowerment of Saudi women in our business. In 2016, we had two Saudi female associates within our company, now we have increased that percentage by 800%. Saudi women make up almost a quarter of our company now, which is significant. We have increased the number of Saudi associates by 400%. When we first started, we had more international staff, and that has changed significantly.

What are your main targets and goals for 2023?

Robert Hofmann: We will continue to grow our leading and most innovative homebuilding brand across Saudi Arabia and set the benchmark when it comes to building, selling, and delivering exceptional homes. Al-Tahaluf will launch new residential communities in additional cities across the Kingdom and expand our footprint. We also pride ourselves on our talent; we want to keep finding the best Saudi associates and grow a team that is wholeheartedly committed to developing inspirational homes at international standards.

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