INNOVATIVE ATTITUDE

Kuwait 2019 | REAL ESTATE & CONSTRUCTION | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Khaled K. Al Mashaan, Vice Chairman & CEO of ALARGAN on the Real Estate sector.

Khaled K. Al Mashaan
BIOGRAPHY
Khaled K. Al Mashaan is the Vice Chairman & CEO of ALARGAN. Al Mashaan is an authority in the field of real estate development, with over three decades of experience in civil engineering and real estate development. He has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the California State University. He later studied financial management, advanced management, and real estate at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He is also the Chairman of the Kuwait Green Building Council and a director on the board of the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science.

How does ALARGAN distinguish itself in the Kuwaiti market?

Innovation is highly embedded in ALARGAN's DNA, and it is important for us to always maintain our momentum and innovative attitude. In 2014, we adopted a strategy that refocused our business from being only a real estate developer to serving primary industries, such as multi-purpose and commercial projects. Today, we focus on income-generating properties in productive sectors, such as the health and education sectors, and are keen to provide the infrastructure for these projects where required. We are also working in the health and education sector and are keen to provide infrastructure where required. We are currently working on one of the largest rehab centers in Kuwait that is expected to open its doors in 3Q2019.

How has the real estate sector in Kuwait grown and changed over the last year?

Since 2018, there has been considerable pressure across the real estate sector and, although we have seen some improvement, we expect these pressures to prevail until 2020. One major issue is that supply is lower than demand, which is caused by the scarcity of land in Kuwait. For example, within the industrial sector, warehouses are in high demand, yet there isn't always enough suitable land on which to build them. On a different but similar note, Kuwait's growth in recent decades took the form of an urban sprawl, with residential neighborhoods springing up to accommodate the growing need for housing, limiting the amount of land available for vital urban infrastructure and other facilities. This resulted in many new neighborhoods lacking vital services and, consequently, people started moving to towns for services unavailable in their residential areas. This problem is less pronounced in the south of Kuwait in comparison to the north. Thus, the lack of land is both a challenge and an opportunity for developers.