Sharjah offers a diversified range of opportunities for holding companies, especially those with experience and a more globalized perspective on local market conditions.
Sharjah has become even more encouraging and developed in terms of doing business in recent years. The Emirate is more open, resources are more readily available, and the government and Shurooq are helpful, making it a good place to do business. The industrial area where we are based has good infrastructure and we have the space and facilities to do well and expand. We are strong in healthcare, which is a growth sector, distributing 20% of the market's medicine and medical equipment in the UAE. We have a new joint venture with an international aerosol-packaging conglomerate from Europe and have also ventured into manufacturing confectionery and we now market biscuits and wafers in our own new brands, Glenda and Amara, apart from contract manufacturing for other international and local brands. Sharjah is investing in hard infrastructure and creating an even greater boost to the Emirate's economy. The government is working hard to put Sharjah on the regional and global business map.
When we established Manafa, we had a clear vision on how we would like to expand our asset portfolio in real estate, hospitality, and various investments. Today, we mainly focus on investments in real estate, capital markets, and private equity. With all what is happening in the market today, we are very particular about our investments. We have a successful track record and only invest in projects or industries that we believe in. We see potential in a particular business, enter the business, grow it, and then we exit at the right time and in line with our overall strategy. It is also about being at the right place at the right time. Today, our assets under management are in excess of USD1 billion. We have also specialized in offering serviced offices for businesses that want to establish themselves in the UAE and we invest in private equity companies and in capital markets, in the US and locally.
The majority of our business focuses on the FMCG sector; for example, we have partnerships and joint ventures with blue chip brands such as Dunlop and Unilever. There has been healthy growth in the FMCG market, despite a change in the market dynamics. For instance, we had a very strong inflow of Russian tourists, which has now tilted towards more tourists from China and the Indian subcontinent. Market dynamics have changed in the retail and trade sector. This year it will be the manufacturing sector that faces the biggest challenges; with the drop in oil prices, raw materials have become much more expensive, and furthermore the fluctuations in steel prices is causing instability, especially with excessive dumping of steel from China, which is negatively affecting the building materials sector. There is a lot of potential in Sharjah and the rate of infrastructure development is phenomenal. There are numerous projects underway within the power, water and transport sectors.
Our chairman was 21 when he established the company 30 years ago, and it has gone from strength to strength since. Today, we have 18 licenses with 14 companies, all of which complement one another. One of our businesses is construction dewatering and complementary to this we have aluminum cladding. We are ISO certified and follow a number of regulations. We also have a construction company, and a real estate holding. We are continuing to invest and expand the business. Aviation and travel are our main business and we have 30 years' experience in the UAE with connections with Syria, Sri Lanka, the US, and the UK, for example. At the moment, we have partnerships in Tanzania and are working with RwandAir, and we are also looking at partnering with airlines in Sri Lanka and Iran. Looking closer to home, through our Chinese cooperation we are able to distribute machinery and heavy equipment for hire, due to 2020 Expo infrastructure development.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
HH Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Federal Supreme Council and Ruler, Sharjah
HH Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Federal Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, has been an inspiring leader of the Emirate since 1972, carefully watching over its development into the cultural capital of the Islamic world.read article
Sheikh Fahim Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Executive Chairman, Department of Government Relations
TBY talks to Sheikh Fahim Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Executive Chairman of the Department of Government Relations, on his department's role in coordinating the delivery of information to key stakeholders and the important part it plays in cultivating sustainable development.read article
HE Sultan Abdullah Bin Hadda Al Suwaidi, Chairman , Sharjah Economic Development Department
TBY talks to HE Sultan Abdullah Bin Hadda Al Suwaidi, Chairman of Sharjah Economic Development Department, on the resilience of Sharjah's economy and building on its well-diversified foundations.read article
HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman, Sharjah Media Corporation
TBY talks to HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Sharjah Media Corporation & Chairman of Sharjah Media Centre, on competitiveness in the sector, its influence on the other Emirates, and expectations for the future.read article
HE Waleed Al Sayegh, Director General , Sharjah's Finance Departmen
TBY talks to HE Waleed Al Sayegh, Director General of Sharjah's Finance Department & CEO of Sharjah Asset Management, on fiscal policy direction and initiatives being introduced to increase efficiency and transparency from the top down.read article
Dr. Rashid Al Leem, Chairman , Sharjah Energy and Water Authority (SEWA)
TBY talks to Dr. Rashid Al Leem, Chairman of Sharjah Energy and Water Authority (SEWA), on the challenges facing the Emirate's plan to reach 30% water re-use by 2020, and changing the attitudes through education.read article
Mohammed N. Al Hazzaa, Director General , Emirates Company for Industrial Cities (ECIC),
TBY talks to Mohammed N. Al Hazzaa, Director General of Emirates Company for Industrial Cities (ECIC), on the company's performance, government support of the private sector, and forecasting occupancy trends.read article
Focus: Reducing water and power consumption
Under Dr. Rashid Al Leem's stewardship, Sharjah is aiming to become the first City of Conservation. This principally encompasses supplying electricity and water through sustainable avenues with technological efficiency while raising awareness of sustainability practices.read article
Ted Young, Project Head, Al Zahia Communities Business Unit at Majid Al Futtaim Properties
TBY talks to Ted Young, Project Head of the Al Zahia Communities Business Unit at Majid Al Futtaim Properties, on the reasons behind the market's resilience and the future of housing demands in the Emirate.read article
Focus: Mixed-use Developments
Cities within Cities
Sharjah's real estate sector is undergoing important transformations, with the government and developers focusing on megaprojects to attract investors. For this purpose, mixed-use developments are increasingly preferred to purely residential or commercial developments.read article
Focus: Fighting Cardiac Disease
The UAE Ministry of Health has stated that over half of all deaths in the UAE are the result of four oft-occurring issues: cardiovascular disease, diabetes, road traffic accidents, and congenital abnormalities. A survey from the Emirates Cardiac Society showed that almost 9 in 10 Emiratis are at risk of heart disease, with one in three unaware of that fact.read article
HE Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman , Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA)
TBY talks to HE Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA), on the growing tourism sector in the Emirate, its strategies to boost cruise tourism, and the incredible progress in Sharjah.read article
Manal Ataya, Director General , Sharjah Museums Department (SMD)
TBY talks to Manal Ataya, Director General of the Sharjah Museums Department (SMD), on cooperating on international exhibits, its educational festivals, and the challenge to ensure that museums are accessible to all.read article
Hanan Al Mahmoud, Director, Al Jawaher Reception & Convention Centre (JRCC)
TBY talks to Hanan Al Mahmoud, Director of Al Jawaher Reception & Convention Centre (JRCC), on the appeal of Sharjah as a MICE destination, plans for expansion, and the projected benefits of Expo 2020.read article