STRENGTH TO STRENGTH

Ras Al Khaimah 2017 | CONSTRUCTION & REAL ESTATE | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Dr. Rashed A. Al Nuaimi, CEO of Al Nuaimi Group, on the company's expansion plans, infrastructural projects currently underway, and his prospects for the coming year.

Dr. Rashed A. Al Nuaimi

How did the Al Nuaimi Group start?

The group had its humble beginning as a transport company in 1974. It was founded by my father, Abdullah Al Nuaimi, and in two years he diversified the company by venturing into civil construction and then to ready mix concrete production and supply in 1976. The group established itself in the construction industry directory of Ras al Khaimah and the Northern Emirates for its quality works and business ethics. Road works and civil construction are our strongest performers. However, all our companies in each segment perform well against their competitors in Ras Al Khaimah, the UAE market, and the GCC. Road works is our strongest division, but construction, ready mix, and piling are also great performers.

What plans do you have for expansion beyond the GCC?

In 2016 we remained conservative, preferring to wait to see how the market develops. We expanded into Egypt two years ago but had to halt our expansion due to the situation there. Also, we are seeking prospective clients to enter into the African market, either in the form of a joint venture or project management system. We still maintain our division in Saudi Arabia and Oman; we have achieved 70% of our targets in these two countries and aim to reach these targets by next year. In Saudi Arabia our operations are positive, regardless of the obstacles we face there. The authorities are great and we are doing well. The ready mix division in Saudi Arabia has become as strong as in the UAE and Oman.

Are you currently working on any construction developments in Ras Al Khaimah?

We still have the Flamingo Extension 68 Villa by RAK Properties and a police complex project in Digdaga, where recently we cast the raft foundation of 2,000 cubic meters of concrete. We have a contract for 30 villas for the ministry, which has expanded to another 10 villas, and potentially another 58 on top of that. We have a construction contract for a showroom for some private businessmen and one prestigious private villa, and Khorfakkan Court was just assigned to us. Recently we signed a contract with RAK Municipality for a new slaughter house with modern amenities in the Al Ghail Area.

How would you assess the current infrastructure development in Ras Al Khaimah?

Ras Al Khaimah was not affected by the recession of 2008 due to its stability and growth. The Emirate is blessed with natural resources, rich minerals, and the sea. There will be a great deal of development in the tourism sector but it needs to be planned and directed in a systematic way. Stable is the adjective I would use for Ras Al Khaimah, and I expect steady growth. The possibility for further development in Ras Al Khaimah is huge, as the tourism sector is showing positive signs and the Emirate has become a favorite spot for national and foreign tourists due to the balanced climate and value-for-money facilities. Waterfront apartments and hotel projects are in the pipeline on newly developed islands like Falcon Island and Al Marjan Island.

What are your prospects for 2016?

We seek to be competitive with our prices for public-sector projects to not only maintain our workload but also to assist the government to do its job effectively. We are one of the few companies in Ras Al Khaimah that covers many segments in the construction sector. We still expect growth in 2016, though last year was much better. There are many key projects that the government will launch in the near future and we want to be a part of them, attaching our name to them. The development projects declared in Al Murjan Island and Mina Al Arab at Cityscape 2016 gives us and the construction industry in general a boost of confidence.