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OCTOBER JUNE 2017 2016


The Road to 2020: Challenges and opportunities ahead of the big event In Person: Mark Ainger, Qatar country director, Faithful+Gould Recruitment: Taylor Sterling on the situation in the UAE

Local construction industry's finest talent celebrated at Doha ceremony We design.. we construct.. we build.. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, PO Box 65697 Riyadh 11566 Tel: +966 11 293 1193 Fax: +966 11 293 1170

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// contents 8 10 18 20 22

June 2017 // Issue #28

Editor’s note News Appointments Contracts Comment

Deloitte on Hospitality

24 Comment

Taylor Sterling on Recruitment

26 In Person

Interview with Mark Ainger – Faithful+Gould

30 Cover Story

Construction Innovation Awards Qatar 2017

construction business news me // June 2017 //


CEO Wissam Younane Managing Director Walid Zok Director Rabih Najm Group Publishing Director Diarmuid O'Malley Group Sales Director Joaquim D'Costa +971 50 440 2706

Business Development Director Rabih Naderi +966 50 328 9818

Editor Jason O'Connell Art Director Aaron Sutton Sales Manager Vishvanath Shetty +971 52 6745378

Marketing Executive Mark Anthony Monzon

SUBSCRIBE PO Box 502511 Dubai, United Arab Emirates P +971 4 4200 506 | F +971 4 4200 196

42 The Road to 2020 Construction Innovation Forum 2017

48 54 66 68 70

Machinery & Vehicles

Volvo on Safety Supplier News Save the Date Editor’s Pick

For all commercial enquiries related to Construction Business News ME contact T +971 55 339 5097 All rights reserved Š 2015. Opinions expressed are solely those of the contributors. Construction Business News ME and all subsidiary publications in the MENA region are officially licensed exclusively to BNC Publishing in the MENA region by Construction Business News ME. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission of the publisher. Images used in Construction Business News ME are credited when necessary. Attributed use of copyrighted images with permission. All images not credited courtesy Shutterstock. Printed by International Printing Press


// construction business news me // June 2017

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// Editor's note

editor’s note

The Pride of Qatar C onstruction activity in Qatar remains robust, despite some challenges, and the country is forging ahead with some incredibly exciting plans with just over five years to go before the first ball is kicked at the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The list of world class projects recently completed or under construction is long and varied. To name just a few they include the hugely ambitious Doha Metro project; the $45bn Lusail Real Estate development which will eventually be home to half a million people; The expansion of Hamad International Airport to more than 65 million passengers. And let’s not forget all the venues and infrastructure related to the World Cup, the greatest sporting show on earth. Qatar is expected to welcome 1 million visitors during the tournament which will require huge investments in infrastructure, hotels and other projects. Last month’s Construction Innovation


Awards Qatar 2017 demonstrated that there is much to celebrate about Qatar’s construction scene right now. Doha Festival City, the country’s latest mega-project, emerged as the big winner at the awards which were presented at a glittering ceremony at the Grand Hyatt hotel Doha to celebrate the achievements of the construction industry’s finest. His Excellency Muhammed Bin Ahmad bin Tower Al Kuwari – Vice Chairman of Qatar Chamber, was on hand to present all of the awards alongside Sheikh Khaled bin Nasser, Chairman of KBN Group. Both gentlemen were presented with special awards in recognition of their great contributions to business in Qatar. BNC Publishing and Construction Business News Middle East magazine would like to thank everyone that made the construction Innovation Awards a big success, especially its allies, Cimolai Rimond, Multiplex, Shaikhani Group, Hill International, Raimondi Cranes, Al Shafar United and Faithful + Gould.

// construction business news me // June 2017

Jason o'Connell Editor

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Update An update from around the region

For News, features and more, Visit Follow us on twitter for breaking news: @cbn_ME Follow us on Facebook for up-to-the-minute breaking news


Qatar unveils first World Cup stadium

Renovated 40,000 seat Khalifa Stadium opens five years before a ball is kicked H.H. the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar inaugurated the first host venue for the 2022 FIFA World in front of 40,000 football fans last month, five years before the tournament starts. The final of Qatar’s biggest domestic football trophy, the Emir Cup, kicked off shortly afterwards at the stadium which was renovated by a joint venture of Midmac Contracting and Six Construct. Work on the stadium, which will host matches up to the quarter final stage of 10

the competition, included the installation of revolutionary cooling technology promised during Qatar’s successful bid, to keep the pitch at 20°C and the stands at 23°C while using 40 percent less energy than traditional cooling methods. H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC), the organisation responsible for delivering the infrastructure required to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar, said

// construction business news me // June 2017

at the launch: “The completion of our first stadium more than five years before the Qatar World Cup begins is an important milestone that reflects our determination to deliver a tournament the entire Arab world is proud to be a part of. “As we promised in our bid, our innovative stadiums offer an unrivalled experience to fans and players alike. I’m proud we can show these off to the world and welcome fans with the hospitality this World Cup

will be remembered for.” Other new features at the stadium include the installation of a larger roof over the entire spectator area, with an intricate net of German and Italian-made steel tension cables weighing 4,000 tonnes holding 92 panels in place. The stadium will also be the first FIFA World Cup venue and the first stadium in the region to be lit by LED lighting, which is both more sustainable and more versatile than traditional lighting.

New project launch

Dubai launches $1.7bn Marsa Al Arab Dubai has unveiled the latest addition to its growing portfolio of world class hospitality offerings. Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum visited Dubai Holding where he was briefed by chairman Abdulla Al Habbei on ‘Marsa Al Arab’. The megaproject will break ground in June 2017 and will completed by late 2020 at a total cost of AED 6.3bn ($1.7bn), according to a statement on Emirates News Agency (WAM). It comprises of two islands, one on each side of Burj Al Arab, that will add a total of 2.2 km of beach frontage. One island will be dedicated to entertainment and family tourism, while the other comprises an exclusive luxury resort. His Excellency Abdulla Al Habbai, chairman of Dubai

Holding said: “Dubai has achieved a global reputation for unique offerings and unprecedented achievements. This was feasible through proper planning and accurate execution of such projects, complemented by in-depth knowledge of the local market’s needs and capabilities. He added: “We will continue to build on our past

success with a focus on the future. Madinat Jumeirah’s visitor footfall and statistics demonstrate its tremendous success over the years, making it the pivot point of our latest development.” Through this resort, Jumeirah Group will introduce new leisure concepts and services to complement its existing family entertainment offer. A high end shopping

mall stretching across 20,000 sq. m will be built on the site of the current Wild Wadi Water Park which will move to a new location on the island and be twice the size of the current water park. There will also be a Marine Park with a marine life ‘edutainment’ centre and a dedicated theatre with a capacity of 1,700 seats that will become home to the worldrenowned show Cirque du Soleil for the first time in the Middle East. Located on the left of Burj Al Arab, a private island will have 140 luxury villas operated by Jumeirah Group as well as a boutique hotel equipped with world-class facilities. Overall, Dubai Holding will add 2,400 hotel rooms to Jumeirah Group’s portfolio, bringing its total offering to 8,428 rooms. There will be 400 new F&B outlets throughout the destination.

Real Estate

Meraas pockets record $16.3mn for Bulgari penthouse Meraas has sold a pair of penthouses at its soon to be delivered Bulgari Residences project in Dubai for a cool AED 110mn ($30mn). A GCC national splashed AED 60mn on a 14,346-square-foot unit, shattering a record set in 2014 for a penthouse which sold for AED 42mn, according to Reidin’s statistics.

The second 12,122-squarefoot penthouse also easily surpassed the previous record by selling for AED 50mn to a European buyer, Meraas said in a statement, adding that all eight penthouses and over 60 percent of the 188 units at Bulgari Residences have been sold with handover due to commence early next year. construction business news me // June 2017 //



Arabtec wins $400mn Dubai tower contract

Dubai-based contractor Arabtec has won a AED 1.46bn ($397mn) contract to build a 300 metre tower alongside Sheikh Zayed Road by 2020.

Developed by Wasl Asset Management (Wasl), the 63-storey mixed use tower will house a Mandarin Oriental hotel and serviced residences, as well as a series of

vertical gardens designed by Amsterdam-based UN Studio. Hamish Tyrwhitt, chief executive of Arabtec Holding, said the contract “has been awarded based on our track record of delivering world-class mixed-used developments, adding to Arabtec Construction’s existing portfolio of over 22 projects we are currently building in the UAE”. Arabtec is in the midst of a restructuring that has involved bringing in new senior management to orchestrate a turnaround in fortunes. The reorganisation combined with an upturn in the market has improved Arabtec’s prospects, Tyrwhitt says. “With the combination of the strategic repositioning of the business, strong industry fundamentals and catalyst events such as Expo 2020 fast-approaching, we believe that the year ahead will see Arabtec continue on its path to a successful and sustainable future.”

// In Numbers GCC contract forecast in 2017

$85.6bn expected value of awards


Y-o-Y rise in value

$40.5bn to be awarded in the UAE

$16.7bn awarded in Qatar

Ground breaking

Hospitality mega project breaks ground Dubai Civil Engineering has broken ground on a $870mn hospitality project barely a month after it was given the greenlight by joint developers Schon Properties and Al Hamad Group. Located in Dubai Investments Park, iSuites will consist of 2,550 hotel apart12

ment suites, 52 restaurants, outdoor cafes and a 125,000 square feet shopping mall surrounded by a manmade

// construction business news me // June 2017

beach and a lagoon spread over 5 acres. The project is well positioned to serve the estimated

25 million visitors that are expected to descend on Expo 2020 over the course of its six-month duration. The hotel apartments will be managed by international hotel operators to offer greater comfort to visitors while a portion of the iSuites inventory will be offered to investors.

Source: Ventures Onsite



Construction disputes resolved quicker

Ongoing liquidity issues within the Middle East construction market has seen an increase in the number of claims submitted however the industry is resolving them more swiftly. On a less positive note, basic contract issues remain the root cause of many of the disputes that materialize across the region, according to the latest research from Arcadis. The ‘2017 Middle East Construction Disputes Report’ is an annual study that examines the most common causes of dispute on construction projects, as well as the average duration and value of disputes, and the method of resolution most commonly deployed. Over the last year, the average length of time needed to resolve a dispute in the Middle East fell to just 13.7 months. This is 10 percent quicker than in the two previous years, and is less than the global average. Similarly, the average value of a construction dispute also decreased, dropping from$82m in 2015 to $56m in 2016. Rob Nelson-Williams, Re-

gional Head of Contract Solutions, Arcadis Middle East said: “This trend towards swifter resolution is particularly welcome as it helps to improve liquidity across the wider supply chain. In a tight market, we’re seeing an increase in the number of claims submitted as contractors take a tougher approach to entitlements to help protect their cash flow position.” A failure to properly administer the terms of the contract remained the most common cause of disputes on construction projects in 2016, closely followed by poorly drafted, incomplete, and unsubstantiated claims. This once again underlines the need to get the basics right, and the importance of seasoned technical and commercial advice when it comes to contract and claims strategy. Nelson-Williams said: “A sharper focus on removing ambiguity from within a contract at the very outset, and better training on how to prepare a robust and credible claim are two relatively simple steps that would make a significant difference.”

Parsons contracted for $1bn District 7 Parsons has recently been awarded a contract for comprehensive multidisciplinary design and construction supervision of a AED 4bn ($1.08bn) project being developed by MAG Property Development in Meydan City, Dubai. District 7 is a mixed-use community within the Meydan Master Development, comprising 35 residential buildings, a clubhouse, a retail zone, office space, and public green areas. The architecture and buildings scope includes residential buildings, townhouses, large villas, a sales center, and several utility buildings. In addition to the concept and detailed design of all of the buildings, Parsons will also complete the master planning, infrastructure, and landscape architecture for the entire site. “This is our first buildings contract with MAG Property Development, and we are excited to work with them,” said Gary Adams, Parsons Group President. “We look forward to bringing our buildings and mixed-use projects expertise to this development.”


LACASA Dubai adds new infrastructure services

LACASA Architects & Engineering Consultants has added Infrastructure design and supervision to its list of offered services in its Dubai Headquarters. Known for its one-stop-shop approach to architectural and engineering consulting, the firm’s inclusion of Infrastructure comes as a response to the increasing number of Masterplanning projects being undertaken in 2017. The addition of Infrastructure services will add fifteen new specialised engineers to LACASA’s Dubai team over the next three months, with further expansion planned for the future. Since its establishment in 2006, LACASA has always adapted to the market’s requirements and conditions rapidly, the company said. Those responses have included exploring new emerging markets, appointing diverse talents, and reforming corporate structures in order to provide better services and higher quality designs for its clients. “We have always strived to provide our clients with the most efficient processes to help them maximize efficiency as well as quality. We are optimistic about our new service offering, as it will allow us to provide holistic urban and Master-planning design solutions to our clients,” said Emad Jaber, Managing Partner.

construction business news me // June 2017 //



// Snapshot

Omniyat’s Zaha Hadid-designed project ‘The Opus’ nears completion in Business Bay

Market outlook

Qatar sees rapid growth

Top 5 Web Stories



Qatar third fastest growing construction market


Doha Festival City wins big at Qatar awards


Nakheel awards $408mn Palm Gateway contract


Dubai unveils $1.7bn Marsa Al Arab mega project


Kuwait awards $46bn worth of contracts in Q1

Qatar will be among the top five fastest-growing construction markets globally over the next five years, according to BMI Research. The Gulf country ranks third in the list which is topped by Myanmar with Ethiopia second and Pakistan and the Philippines in fourth and fifth place respectively. All five will record double-digit growth as their governments work to tackle significant infrastructure needs, BMI Research said in its outlook for the global construction industry. Qatar’s growth outperformance over the next five years will be driven primarily by substantial public investment into its transport and commercial construction building sectors as the market prepares to host the FIFA 2022 World Cup. The government aims to spend QAR 198.4bn ($54.37bn) in 2017 and generate some QAR 170.1bn in revenue, opening a fiscal deficit of QAR 28.3bn that will be covered by issuing debt in the international financial markets. Of this, 21 percent has been allocated to the transport sector, as the antici-

// construction business news me // June 2017

pated influx of visitors places strain on the existing network; and 47 percent for projects related to the hosting of the major sporting event, including stadia and ancillary infrastructure. Opportunities stemming from the event will ensure Qatar remains fertile ground for international investors, with an acceleration of tender announcements and contract opportunities expected in the run up to 2022. BMI Research is forecasting industry expansion in Qatar of 12.1 percent in real terms between 2017 and 2021.


Sky Bridge lifted into place

// Bitesize news

Damac Properties managing director Ziad El Chaar has resigned his position and is leaving the company he joined in 2005.

A bridge linking a pair of adjacent Emaar Properties skyscrapers in Downtown Dubai has been hoisted into place. At a height of over 220 metres above ground, the 85-metre-long Sky Bridge, will join the Address Sky View hotel with the Address Residences Sky View, designed by Burj Khalifa architect Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. The three storey bridge will feature eight duplexes topped by a 70-metre-long infinity pool. It was made us-

ing 4,500 tonnes of steel, and was lifted into position using Strand Jacking Technology, customised for the project. A team of global experts from five different entities worked on the project that was completed in around 365 days by over 300 professionals and skilled workers. The bridge addressed several design challenges given the extensive loads of steel and concrete, as well as the loads related to the infinity pool, pool deck and façade.

To address the construction challenges, the main body of the bridge was divided into five elements, each weighing over 400 tonnes each. The fifth element is the MEGA truss in the middle that has a total weight of over 1,500 tonnes. High capacity cranes, not commonly used in the region, were deployed to lift the huge weights. Special high-capacity hydraulic jacks were also imported from Switzerland.

Greenline Interiors (GLI) wins fitout contracts worth a combined AED 130mn ($35.4mn) for hotels in Business Bay and Deira.

Emaar earnings jump by 15 percent to AED 1.384bn ($377mn) in the first quarter of the year as property sales took off.

Hill International chief David L. Richter steps down David L. Richter has resigned as Chief Executive Officer of Hill International, ending a 22-year career with the company. Richter, who became CEO in 2014, initiated and led the effort to make Hill a public company in 2006 and his final act was to oversee the sale of Hill’s construction claims group, leaving Hill as a pure play project management company.

“The sale of the company’s Construction Claims Group is critical to the future of Hill. It was extremely important for me and the company to see this transaction through,” said Richter. “This sale will significantly improve Hill’s financial position and create opportunities for growth that were not possible prior to the sale. I am

extremely proud of the team we have built at Hill and I am honored to have served as CEO of such an outstanding world-class organization.” Paul Evans, a Director on Hill’s Board since August 2016, will assume the role of Interim Chief Executive Officer and Director until a permanent replacement is appointed.

Engineering Contracting Company LLC (ECC) completes milestone as it signs off on the dusitD2 Kenz Hotel in Barsha Heights, Dubai.

construction business news me // June 2017 //



Progress update

Dubai ruler reviews progress of The Tower

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has reviewed construction progress on what will become the tallest building in the world when complete. Sheikh Mohammed was briefed on the milestones already achieved on The Tower at Dubai Creek Harbour, a collaboration between Emaar Properties and Dubai Holding, including completion of foundation work and the start of work on the anchorages for the stay cables that are an integral part of the building’s design and structural support. More than 145 barrette piles have been laid to depths of over 72 metres to secure the super-tall structure. His Highness witnessed the trimming of the barrette piles and the preparation of the reinforcement couplers, ready to receive the first sub structure slab. The barrette piles used for 16

the foundation have been tested to a world record test load of 36,000 tonnes. The work was undertaken by foundation specialist, Soletanche Bachy. A cathodic protection system, similar to that used on the foundations of Burj Khalifa, is being completed to protect it from any corrosion risk. HE Abdulla Al Habbai, chairman of Dubai Holding said: “The Tower at Dubai Creek Harbour reflects the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to establish Dubai as a global hub for business and leisure that attracts visitors from across the world. With this iconic development, Dubai is once again demonstrating its ability to develop first-ofits-kind projects that surprise the world.” Designed by Spanish/Swiss architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava Valls, The Tower will feature several observation decks that offer 360 degree views of the city and beyond.

// construction business news me // June 2017

Bee’ah and Masdar launch waste to energy plant

Bee’ah and Masdar have formed a joint venture to develop waste-toenergy plants across the UAE. Emirates Waste to Energy Company (EWEC) will build a plant in Sharjah to incinerate 300,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste per year and produce 30 megawatts (MW) of electricity. Upon completion of the new facility, Sharjah will become the first city in the Middle East to divert 100 percent of waste from landfill. His Excellency Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment for the United Arab Emirates, attended the launch of the project on Thursday and witnessed the signing of the waste supply agreement (WSA) and power purchasing agreement (PPA) by Bee’ah, Masdar and Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA) officials. Bee’ah and Masdar said EWEC’s first project would leverage the

strengths of both companies to pave the way for further waste-to-energy facilities in the UAE and the wider region, delivering commercial solutions to meet the challenge of solid waste disposal and demand for clean energy. H.E. Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said: “The Wasteto-Energy joint venture in Sharjah represents an important step in our endeavor towards sustainability and a bold and unconventional solution to address the increasing development challenges in a sustainable way to achieve the objectives of the National Agenda for UAE Vision 2021.” French company CNIM is the lead contractor on the project and will design, build and operate the plant which is to be located within the site of Bee’ah’s existing Waste Management Center Centre.


Steel industry blighted by counterfeiting A study commissioned by the Steel Alliance against Counterfeiting (SAAC) has revealed that more than half the industry (53 percent) has reported an incidence of, what is believed to be, counterfeit steel products at some point in day-to-day operations. SAAC, which was formed in 2015 and is made up of the world’s 18 leading suppliers of steel products, is working to drive awareness and identify solutions to the growing problem of fake steel in the region. Market studies indicate that the total volume of tubular products in the MENA market in 2016 reached 2,967,176 tons. The research revealed that 79 percent of construc-

tion industry professionals in the Gulf are in favour of tighter controls over the import of steel products from certain markets. Government policies, including the UAE Fire and Life Safety Code, prescribe a very high standard for materials to be used in buildings and installations. Insights and feedback from 70 contractors, consultants and product suppliers from across the GCC were used

for the study, which was released at a meeting of industry professionals. Andrey Burtsev, Commercial Director for Middle East, Africa and Asia markets, Interpipe, said: “Cities in the GCC region are shining examples of technology adoption and groundbreaking architectural feats. There is absolutely no place for any uncertainty or spurious practices that compromise their infrastructure.

As the survey indicates, counterfeit steel products continue to pose significant risks across sectors and in critical installations like oil rigs, pipelines, oil refineries and so on. Through this study, we are supporting key governmental initiatives and procedures that protect society and sustain economic development.” Bertrand de Rotalier, Managing Director, Middle East, Vallourec, said: “We cannot emphasize enough the dangers of counterfeit material usage in our sector. This is the reason why members of SAAC are working together to apply preventive measures to fight the use of counterfeit tubular products.”


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construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Appointments

Appointments Movers and shakers in the industry

Arabtec Doosan Bobcat names new regional president Construction Alvaro Pacini has assumed the role of president appoints new CEO for Doosan Bobcat Europe, Middle East & Africa Arabtec Holding has appointed a new chief executive officer of Arabtec Construction as part of the company’s ongoing restructuring. Boyd Merrett joins Arabtec from CIMIC Group where he was the general manager for Leighton Asia in Hong Kong, responsible for winning and delivering major building, MEP and infrastructure projects worth over $7bn. He has expertise across an array of specialisms in the industry with more than 24 years of experience in international construction, spanning the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa.

Meraas and Dubai Holding form JV DXB Entertainments CEO Raed Kajoor Al Nuaimi has been appointed to lead a new group that will manage multi-billion dollar development projects across Dubai Holding and Meraas Holding. Al Nuaimi will remain as CEO of DXB Entertainments, the Dubai Financial Market-listed company behind Dubai Parks and Resorts, until a new CEO is appointed. He will thereafter continue as a senior executive with the company, in the role of Managing Director and executive member of the Board of Directors. DXB Entertainments will announce the appointment of a new CEO in due course. 18

(EMEA). He will be responsible for the company’s Doosan, Bobcat, Geith and Portable Power brands in the region. Pacini joined Doosan Bobcat in 2011 as the vice president of sourcing in EMEA before taking on additional responsibilities and leading total quality management in 2013 and then operations in 2015. Doosan Bobcat has been expanding its product portfolio and growing its dealer channels across its heavy, compact and portable power equipment brands.

RMJM appoints Raymond Park as CEO International architecture and planning group, RMJM, has appointed Raymond Park as its new chief executive officer, based in the company’s headquarters in d3, Dubai Design District. Park takes over from current CEO, Harry Downie, who is retiring at the end of May. Raymond has a wealth of experience in the Middle East construction industry which has seen him gain a first class reputation that has encompassed periods with design consultants, real estate developers and project managers.

Nakheel draws on Emirati talent

// construction business news me // June 2017

Nakheel has announced organisational changes, with a newly-created department and new senior management appointments, as the company enters the next phase in its growth. Fawzi Al Shehhi becomes managing director, Nakheel Community Planning and Management – a new department that combines the company’s existing Community Management and Development Control and Urban Planning functions. Nakheel has also appointed Omar Khoory as managing director, Nakheel Malls, to lead the strategy, operations, leasing and planning for company’s existing and upcoming retail developments.



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// Contracts

Contracts Aldar awards $462mn Yas Acres contract Aldar Properties has handed Trojan General Contracting a AED 1.7bn ($462mn) main contract for the first three precincts of its flagship development on Yas Island – Yas Acres. The contractor will mobilise on site immediately as it works on all infrastructure, 652 villas and townhouses, the golf course, golf club house, mosque, retail and community clubs. The main package will be delivered over a period of 32 months with the first homes due to be handed over at the end of 2019.

Shapoorji Pallonji wins $408mn Palm Gateway contract

Bloom awards contract for Dubai Marina tower Bloom Properties has awarded General Construction Company the contract for the main works of Stella Maris, its water-front development in Dubai. Taking shape at the southern end of Dubai Marina, the 52 storey luxury development will deliver 313 high-end residences in total, ranging from one- to three- bedroom units, as well as four-bedroom duplex apartments and penthouses.

Dubai Properties names contractor for Bellevue Towers Dubai Properties (DP) has handed SEIDCO General Contracting the AED 200mn ($54.5mn) main contract for its Bellevue Towers residential tower in Burj Khalifa District. By the second quarter of 2019 work should be completed on the twin towers which will offer a total of 319 units. Located close to the waterfront of Marasi Business Bay, Bellevue Towers has a sustainable design featuring a contemporary façade with balconies and terraces for all apartments.

RTA awards $100mn Jewel of the Creek roads contract Nakheel has signed a construction contract worth nearly AED 1.5bn ($408mn) for The Palm Gateway, a three-tower residential, retail and beach club complex at the foot of the world-famous Palm Jumeirah. The developer has appointed Shapoorji Pallonji Mideast to carry out the work, which will begin in the second quarter of 2017 and take two and a half years to complete.


// construction business news me // June 2017

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has awarded a AED 375mn ($102mn) contract to build the tunnels and roads leading to the Jewel of the Creek project. Work will involve construction of roads, subways, and slipways linking the project with the surrounding roads and transport network. Construction of the mixed use project, which sits on the north side of the creek between Al Maktoum Bridge and the Floating Bridge, is set to be complete in the first half of 2019.

DAMAC Properties awards contract worth $10.9mn

Nakheel tenders contract for $180mn Deira Islands resort

DAMAC Properties has awarded Proscape with a AED 40mn ($10.9mn) contract for roads and infrastructure works at Vardon cluster within the AKOYA Oxygen development in Dubai. Home to over 2,000 luxury hotel apartments, the development has a long promenade offering high-end shopping, dining and entertainment. Vista Lux is set alongside the lake and fountains, with views of the golf course and parkland beyond.

Yuksel wins $500mn Riyadh transport contract Turkey’s Yuksel has won a SAR 1.91bn ($508mn) contract to build the infrastructure for the third phase of Riyadh’s Bus Rapid Transit System (BRT). Ar-Riyadh Development Authority (ADA) awarded the deal for the project which will complement the Riyadh Metro project when complete in around two years. Yuksel’s scope of work includes 22 km road rehabilitation works, construction of 34 sta-

tions, 1,353 community bus stops and six pedestrian bridges with all civil, mechanical and electrical works.

Dubai master developer Nakheel has released a construction tender for an 800-room, beachfront resort and water park at Deira Islands to be operated by Spanish hospitality group RIU Hotels & Resorts. With an investment value of AED 670mn ($182mn), the resort – RIU’s first in the Middle East and one of the biggest in Dubai in terms of hotel rooms – is set for delivery in Q4 2019.

Hill bags $2mn Saadiyat Island hotel contract

JV awards $16mn Qatar World Cup stadium design contract

Korea’s Heerim Architects and Planners Co has signed a KRW 18.38bn ($16.2mn) design and engineering services contract for a football stadium in Qatar. The deal was awarded by the joint venture (JV) of Qatar’s AlJaber Engineering (JEC) and Turkey’s Tekfen Construction that is building the 40,000 seat stadium in Doha’s Al Thumama neighbourhood.

Hill International has been contracted to provide project management services during construction of a new Saadiyat Island resort in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Awarded by the Sheikh Suroor Projects Department on behalf of H.H. Sheikh Suroor Bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, the initial one-year contract has an estimated value to Hill of approximately AED 7mn ($1.9mn). The resort will feature 293 rooms with a built-up area of approximately 113,000 square metres.

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Comment

Welcome to the GCC The forecast for both hotel demand and supply growth remains strong By Dunia Joulani, Manager at Deloitte Financial Advisory within the Travel, Hospitality and Leisure (THL) division in the Real Estate team.


conomic headwinds such as the decline in oil price and currency fluctuations in the US Dollar, geopolitical tension and tightening liquidity are placing pressure on governments in the GCC to prioritise strategic projects. As diversifying the economy and improving the tourism sector comes to the forefront of government agenda and with two major upcoming events in the region; the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and the 2020 World Expo in Dubai, there is no doubt that hospitality development is a clear priority across the GCC and the forecast for both hotel demand and supply growth remains strong. There are a significant number of hospitality projects under various stages of planning, design and construction in the GCC. According to MEED, there are over 550 projects worth over $55bn that have been announced in the pipeline representing approximately 156,000 rooms (STR estimate). Approximately 50 percent of the planned projects are in the UAE, followed by 24 percent in KSA, 12 percent in Qatar, 7 percent in Oman, 4 percent in Kuwait and 3 percent in Bahrain. The UAE clearly dominates in terms of the number of projects in the pipeline, made up of 280 projects primarily within Dubai followed by Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah. KSA has over 130 projects in planning across 16 22

different cities with the largest concentration of planned projects being in Jeddah, Riyadh, Khobar and Mecca. Downward pressure on performance In terms of the performance of the hotel market in the GCC, no two countries, or even cities, are alike. The nature of these markets, the performance and drivers of performance within each city are markedly different. Despite the continuous growth in Dubai’s hotel supply, it still achieves the highest average daily rate (ADR)

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and occupancy compared to any major GCC city with 86.2 percent occupancy and an ADR of $216 recorded for the YTD March 2017. This signifies a slight increase in occupancy from 84 percent YTD 2016, but the rise in occupancy in 2017 has been achieved at the expense of a 6 percent decrease in ADR from $231 representing a decrease in RevPAR of 3.9 percent. Dubai’s leading performance is followed by Abu Dhabi achieving 75 percent occupancy and an ADR of $130 and Sharjah at 84.5 percent occupancy albeit at a much lower ADR of $78 for YTD March 2017. Muscat and Doha have achieved 68.7 percent and 68 percent occupancy and ADRs $181 and $180 YTD March 2017 respectively. The lowest occupancies over this period were recorded in KSA with Al Khobar / Dammam at 49.2 percent followed by 54.2 percent in Jeddah and 57.2 percent in Riyadh. In addition, it indicates a drop from 62.5 percent and 66 percent for Khobar / Dammam and Jeddah respectively for the same period in the previous year. Future outlook - A strong foundation to endure unpredictable market conditions Existing market conditions and the planned growth in supply may cause

Both Dubai and Abu Dhabi continue to develop key cultural, leisure and entertainment attractions which are helping positon them as global tourism hubs�

Number of Projects by country

Kuwait - 4% Oman

Bahrain - 3%

7% 12%





Saudi Arabia

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a Do



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RevPAR changed from YTD March 2016 to YTD March 2017

-5 -5% -10 -10% -15 -15% -20 -20% -25 -25% -30 -30% -35 -35% downward pressure on performance levels across many of the cities in the GCC in the short to medium term as the GCC invests in tourism infrastructure, by improving the diversity of its offering, and by enhancing the supporting tourism infrastructure, it is building a strong foundation for the future, albeit at varying levels of progress across the different countries.

Source: STR Global

Both Dubai and Abu Dhabi continue to develop key cultural, leisure and entertainment attractions which are helping positon them as global tourism hubs. For the UAE the future continues to look positive despite downward pressure on performance, until supply growth and demand growth stabilise. Qatar, on the other hand, while investment in the hospitality and tour-

ism sector is growing and demand is steadily increasing, there is a risk that the demand growth is unlikely to be sufficient to support this level of supply growth post the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Tourism in KSA continues to be driven primarily by religious and business tourism, but there is a strong focus on stimulating the domestic tourism offering to increase the proportion of Saudi nationals spending their leisure time in the Kingdom which is essential because this is a volume market. The outlook for the market is positive as tourism infrastructure is improved and entertainment and leisure offering is developed in line with creation of a dedicated authority, the General Authority For Entertainment. This is expected to have an especially positive impact on domestic tourism. Investment into key tourism markets in Oman, including Muscat and Salalah, is helping position Oman as a differentiated destination which attracts both GCC and international source markets. A key success factor for various cities will be diversifying their source markets and growing the various market segments (leisure, MICE, business) based on their locational attributes and offerings which will help the market endure the ever fluctuating political and economic market conditions in the region.

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// Comment

Talking Talent Marcus Taylor, managing partner at recruitment agency Taylor Sterling, talks about the current state of construction and engineering recruitment.


he biggest challenge facing the construction industry, from a hiring perspective, is getting the right people at the right price point. The cost of living went up at the tail end of 2016 and has remained high, but salaries have in most cases remained constant. Companies in need of strong hires are being forced to put this on hold as they experience industry-wide delays in projects being awarded, as developers are trying to reduce their own spending. What this has led to is mid-level companies with mid-level talent being awarded an increasing number of contracts, rather than the big players who have been able to invest in top level talent. To get the best talent today, companies need to be offering very lucrative packages, or look outside of the GCC to bring new top talent in. This of course comes with its own issues, as foreign hires are lacking in local experience. We recommend finding local, high achieving, mid-management talent and growing them or importing talent from overseas. The market has gone from experience dominated to a younger, more tech savvy, driven workforce. Up until a couple of years ago we saw heavily experienced 45 to 60-yearolds driving the big companies, but now we are seeing more and more 30 to 45-year-olds being hired and being incredibly successful for aspiring companies. Continuing buzz words - Expo2020 and the World Cup - are simply the accelerators, post downturn. It’s so important to be ahead of the curve and to be looking at the long term. Today the UAE, and most of the GCC, 24

There are many mid-skilled workers but the top end, where you get your highest quality and most experience, is not big enough to meet demand”

is evolving from being an emerging market to a mature one, so talented employees are now choosing to move to this region as a life choice, not just for the salaries. It’s getting easier to import talent from a recruitment perspective and we are looking at this as an option more and more. As of today, 70 percent of our time is spent placing senior construction professionals – from building to infrastructure roles. 78 percent of those we placed since the end of last year have not been actively looking for a move. What this tells us is that this drive to create solid, long-term foundations has already seen its first wave. If construction companies who haven’t factored this into their development strategy don’t act quickly they will not only face a serious talent shortage, but should expect to be overtaken by those early investors in talent.

// construction business news me // June 2017

We are often asked whether competition for skilled workers is growing as the construction sector recovers. In short; there are many mid-skilled workers but the top end, where you get your highest quality and most experience, is not big enough to meet demand. That said, global issues like Brexit and the Donald Trump Presidency have created a good opportunity for us across the GCC to encourage talent to move here. It’s for the construction industry to capitalise on. Every country has their own plan, whether it be for 2020, 2030 or 2050. Dubai has the most imminent plan for Expo2020, closely followed by Qatar’s 2022 plan for the World Cup. I really can’t stress enough how important it is to have a relationship with a specialist in talent sourcing that can provide quality personnel and avoid panic hiring at the last minute.

Delivering National Pride For the past decade, we’ve provided integrated turnkey construction services for highly challeging and complex projects to make our Clients‘ vision a reality. The United Arab Emirates Pavilion at EXPO 2015 in Milan, designed by the world-famous architecture studio Foster +Partners, takes its inspiration from the desert landscape and the highly innovative and futuristic e©q†‡³yq³·©y‚2e­ue© ‡³Âů2­³­‡ƒ˜‡Ëqe˜³’ÂŪ³†yAe¿‡’‡˜‡­uy­‡ƒ˜yu³ be relocated to the UAE.

After a successful delivery in Milan, the Pavilion has been distmantled and relocated to Masdar City. Now, we are working on the ultimate reconstruction of the Pavilion, to showcase sustainability projects embracing UAE’s National Pride. We are very proud to be a part of this ambitious mission. |

// In person

Qatar in Focus

Mark Ainger, Faithful+Gould’s Qatar Country Director, talks to Construction Business News about the consultant’s ongoing activity in the country and the outlook for the construction industry. What are some of the main projects you’re working on in Qatar? Faithful+Gould is currently involved in some of Qatar’s most prestigious projects. We are proud to be programme managers on Doha Oasis, an unprecedented development offering a high end residential low-rise compound, a retail complex, an exclusive 7 Star high-rise hotel tower and a world class indoor theme park. We are involved in several aspects of the multiple award winning and recently opened Doha Festival City, the largest retail mall in Qatar, and the largest under construction at present 26

in the Middle East. We are also Project Manager for the Shaza Hotel, a 5 *, 4 storey hotel. We are providing cost, commercial and controls to Ashghal on several projects across their building and infrastructure portfolio, expressways and local roads and drainage, programmes and we are also providing advisory services at a strategic level. What are the key construction market trends in Qatar at the moment? The Qatar market has been constrained to a degree by the suppressed oil and gas prices on the world market. Qatar has seized this opportunity

// construction business news me // June 2017

to review and prioritise its pipeline and assess timelines for completion to match growth predictions and national development demands. Overall this has brought restrictions to the number and level of awards but we remain hopeful that this period of review will lead to a more robust pipeline in supply of projects developed out of necessity to meet both the Qatar 2030 National Vision and the more short term and immediate demands of the FIFA World Cup 2022. To what extent is the World Cup propping up the market? Overall underlying market growth is

Doha Festival City driven by the Qatar National Vision 2030 and the nation’s development strategy around this. To date this has been supplemented by the National Vision 2011 – 16, shortly to be replaced by the National Vision 2017-22. A number of requirements within this have been accelerated and flexed to meet the shorter term demands of the Fifa World Cup 2022. The World Cup has added a further degree of immediacy to development and has provided focus to accelerate several infrastructure and tournament specific projects. This is where we see the demand rising for companies such as Faithful+Gould, with vast experience and unrivalled

expertise in fast tracking projects and a need for us to provide much needed project management services to meet looming deadlines. What are the main challenges facing construction companies in Qatar right now? Cash flow is often noted as a challenge by many parties within the current market. Challenging and at times punitive contract terms often provide challenges, often with risk apportioned to parties that may not be best placed to manage such risk can at times limit innovation and provide restrictions on what could

be achieved by closer collaboration and a stronger partnering approach to delivery. Which sectors are providing the best opportunities right now and which sectors are suffering the most? All sectors present opportunities for companies with a demonstrated depth and strength in delivery within the local market in a country with such ambitious development plans as Qatar. One risk that is often noted in the recent market however is a potential oversupply in certain sectors, such as retail and hospitality, as a large number of developments commenced in recent years come to

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// In person

market simultaneously. A new balance across the market to suit demand will take some time to be achieved to reassess underlying market conditions. Infrastructure growth on a local level for roads, expressways, metro and rail systems remains strong although many of the major commissions have been let. National plans around international travel continue unabated and will provide growth for some years to come if predictions prove true. Qatar’s business landscape and commercial centres are also fluid which provides challenges to foresee underlying market conditions. West Bay remains a business hub yet Msheireb and Lusail continue to develop and come on stream as significant commercial and mixed use residential and retail areas of the future. The Pearl as a residential centre can be seen to be maturing. All these and others are signs of a rapidly developing and maturing country growing steadily towards its 2030 National Vision. 28

// construction business news me // June 2017

The World Cup has added a further degree of immediacy to development and has provided focus to accelerate several infrastructure and tournament specific projects�

What's your outlook for the next five years? Overall the outlook for the construction market remains positive. With specific market changing events programmed for five years from now it is impossible not to consider a short to medium term peak in construction projects as these events become closer and more immediate. Overall the outlook is good, but the market needs to progress past and through the current hiatus with sufficient and locally deployed resource to adequately meet these future challenges. It is critical for all sectors that the release of funding for those programmes required for 2022 and 2030 commences with a degree of positivity and urgency in the short term to enable those companies committed to supporting Qatar with its development to meet the future challenges and satisfy client needs.

// Awards

In association with


// construction business news me // June 2017

Gold Sponsors

Category Ally

Presented by

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Awards

Pride of Qatar Doha Festival City is the standout performer at the Construction Innovation Awards Qatar 2017. A total of 17 awards were handed out at the Grand Hyatt Doha on May 10


onstruction activity in Qatar remains robust, despite some challenges, and the country is forging ahead with some incredibly exciting plans with just over five years to go before the first ball is kicked at the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The list of world class projects recently completed or under construction is long and varied. To name just a few they include the hugely ambitious Doha Metro project; the $45bn Lusail Real Estate development which will eventually be home to half a million people; The expansion of Hamad International Airport to more than 65 million passengers. And let’s not forget all the venues and infrastructure related to the World Cup, the greatest sporting show on earth. Qatar is expected to welcome 1 million visitors during the tournament which will require huge investments in infrastructure, hotels and other projects. Last month’s Construction Innovation Awards Qatar 2017 demonstrated that there is much to celebrate about Qatar’s construction scene right now. Doha Festival City, the country’s latest megaproject, emerged as the big winner at the awards which were presented at a glittering ceremony at the Grand Hyatt hotel Doha to celebrate the achievements of the construction industry’s finest. His Excellency Muhammed Bin Ahmad bin


Engineer of the year Shah Memon, Multiplex

// construction business news me // June 2017

Sustainable Project of the Year: Arabian MEP for the Polysilicon Solar Panel Manufacturing Facility

Real Estate Innovation of the Year – Just Real Estate

Project of the Year: GCC ALEC JV for Doha Festival City

Construction Executive of the Year – Peter Leitner, GCC/ALEC JV

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Awards

Formwork Company of the Year – DOKA

Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah Al Thani, chairman of SAK Holding (pictured right) wins the Ecosystem Innovation award for the outstanding Sharekna Initiative


// construction business news me // June 2017

Khatib & Alami won the Most Innovative Project award for the Schools Master Plan for the State of Qatar

Health and Safety Initiative of the Year – Arab Engineering Bureau

Faithful+Gould won the award for Hospitality Project of the Year for the Shaza Hotel Doha

Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah Al Thani, chairman of SAK Holding

Tower Al Kuwari – Vice Chairman of Qatar Chamber, was on hand to present all of the awards alongside Sheikh Khaled bin Nasser, Chairman of KBN Group. Both gentlemen were presented with special awards in recognition of their great contributions to business in Qatar. Doha Festival City walked away with the award for Project of the Year as well as Commercial Project of the Year and also garnered the coveted Construction Executive of the Year award for its evergreen project manager, Peter Leitner of GCC/ALEC JV, the main contractor that built the mall. Even the award for Health and Safety Initiative of the Year, won by Arab Engineering Bureau, was linked to this great project which opened in April. construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Awards

Eisa Al Hammadi, CEO of Qatar Primary Materials Company, collected the Infrastructure Project of the Year award

His Excellency Muhammed Bin Ahmad bin Tower Al Kuwari, vice chairman of Qatar Chamber (left) and Sheikh Khaled bin Nasser, Chairman of KBN Group

Construction Company of the Year – Alsarh Holding Group Another big winner on the night was Faithful+Gould which had a big hand in the award for Hospitality Project of the Year which went to The Shaza Hotel Doha, set to be a game changer when it opens later this year. The consultant also played an important role in Doha Festival City alongside the contractor GCC/ALEC JV. The Contractor of The Year award, however went to Multiplex which re36

cently handed over the Qatar National Library in Education City and is also a main contractor on the huge Msheireb Downtown Doha project. Shah Memon, Multiplex’ construction manager on the QAR 2bn mixed use mega project, also walked away with the award for Engineer of the Year. Other big awards handed out on the night included Infrastructure Project of the Year which went to the Gabbro

// construction business news me // June 2017

Berth Terminal, BMHS Project. Eisa Al Hammadi, CEO of Qatar Primary Materials Company (QPMC), collected the award for the port expansion project which was project managed by Aurecon and built by a contracting joint venture of Six Construct and FLSmidth. Just Real Estate clinched the award for Real Estate Innovation of the Year for the company’s brand new sales centre in Doha. Hill International bagged

Project Management Firm of the Year – Hill International

Faithful+Gould collected the Commercial Project of the Year award for Doha Festival City Project Management Firm of the Year, local firm ASTAD claimed Consultancy of the Year and Formwork Company of the Year went to DOKA for its involvement in the Doha Metro project. The Polysilicon Solar Panel Manufacturing Facility in Qatar won Sustainable Project of the Year while the award for Most Innovative Project went to Khatib & Alami for its Schools Master Plan for the State of Qatar.

Local group Alsarh Holding Group claimed the award for Construction Company of the Year for the many projects it has contributed in Qatar in recent years while Daemaar Group beat off stiff competition to bag the award for MEP Contractor of The Year. SAK Holding claimed the Ecosystem Innovation award for its Sharekna initiative, which has helped to see many Qatari big projects through to comple-

tion despite challenging times in the construction scene. BNC Publishing and Construction Business News Middle East magazine would like to thank everyone that made the construction Innovation Awards a big success, especially its allies, Cimolai Rimond, Multiplex, Shaikhani Group, Hill International, Raimondi Cranes, Al Shafar United, and category sponsors Faithful + Gould.

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Awards

Mohammed Jafer Musthafa, founder and MD of Daemaar Group, collects the MEP Contractor of the Year award


// construction business news me // June 2017

Consultancy of the Year – ASTAD

Contractor of the Year was Multiplex Medgulf

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// Awards

Full List of 2017 Winners: Engineer of the Year

Shah Memon, Multiplex

Sustainable Project of the Year

Arabian MEP - Polysilicon Solar Panel Manufacturing Facility

Formwork Company of the Year


Health and Safety Initiative of the Year

Arab Engineering Bureau

Hospitality Project of the Year

Faithful+Gould - The Shaza Hotel Doha

Most Innovative Project

Khatib & Alami - Schools Master Plan for the State of Qatar

Construction Company of the Year

Alsarh Holding Group

Infrastructure Project of the Year

Aurecon - Gabbro Berth Terminal, BHMS project

Project Management Firm of the Year

Hill International

Commercial Project of the Year

Faithful+Gould - Doha Festival City

MEP Contractor of the Year

Daemaar Group

Consultancy of the Year


Project of the Year

GCC ALEC JV - Doha Festival City

Real Estate Innovation of the Year

Just Real Estate

Construction Executive of the Year

Peter Leitner, GCC/ALEC JV

Contractor of the Year – Multiplex

Contractor of the Year – Multiplex

Ecosystem Innovation

Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah Al Thani, chairman of SAK Holding Sharekna Initiative Gold Sponsors


// construction business news me // May 2017

Category Ally

Presented by

Leaders in Project Management

// Construction innovation Forum 2017

The Road to 2020


ustained lower oil prices have hit the regional construction sector in recent years but the approach of Expo 2020 has helped sustain momentum in Dubai. Not only will billions of dollars be invested in and around the Expo site over the next three years but big projects are being launched all over the emirate with a view to being ready in time for 2020. How much of a boost has Expo 2020 been for the construction sector? Has the government left it late to award main contracts for Expo 2020? How can companies fast track projects to be ready in time for the event? These are a few of the questions posed to experts that participated in the top panel discussion at the recent Construction Innovation Forum. 42

Considering the regional construction industry has been going through a rough time, how much of a boost is Expo 2020 to the industry as a whole? Zander Muego: What we’ve seen is the Expo has contributed to the construction sector for sure. What it’s done from our perspective is increased the positivity that came with winning the Expo and helped offset an otherwise very difficult market. There are a number of macro-economic factors at play, with oil prices and a strong dollar value putting a lot of pressure on the sector, so the Expo has helped boost the morale of the industry and a conduit of work, not just specifically Expo projects but also those around and related to it.

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Do strong oil prices provide an opportunity and an incentive to diversify local economies further and build more sustainable economies? Raj Chinai: What we’ve seen since 2014 is a dip in the overall macro environment, particularly related to real estate. We’re now starting to see some positive momentum in terms of sales velocity and the overall fundamentals of the economy. That two and a half year down cycle typically gets followed by a two and a half year upcycle. With the Expo 2020 coming up I think what might happen is that the positive momentum may carry that cycle forward beyond two and half years. So from our perspective Expo is an important event. It creates a positive sentiment that in-

Is the government able to demonstrate they are doing enough to instill confidence in foreign investors to consider investing in projects leading towards 2020? Raj: In our projects we see upwards of 50 nationalities represented in our buyer profile. The fact that we have such a diverse mix of investors coming in says a lot about the confidence that people have in Dubai.

vestors have at the back of their mind, also for international investors that are looking at Dubai. Mohammed Jafer Musthafa: Developments in Dubai have carried on well despite the oil price. If you consider the value of the construction sector last year was around AED 160bn and this year it’s AED 180bn - AED190bn, so growth of around AED 30bn. The construction market this year will drive growth in the economy of around 3 – 3.5% and that’s definitely happening with the help of Expo 2020. Are construction companies experiencing difficulties sourcing finance? Maged El Hawary: Some foreign companies are getting finance from other countries to finance projects which enables the client to get the project delivered. Typical finance model is 60/40 up to even 80/20 so the client is paying only 20% while the bank is financing the

other 80% with a holiday period of up to 36 months. So they can build now and pay later. This has been happening with many projects since late 2014. Raj: Whether you’re looking at foreign capital or capital from within the region it’s imperative that investors have a confidence level based on some sort of prior track record. Investors within the region are more comfortable and familiar with Dubai and the fundamentals but the moment you start talking to investors in London, North America, etc there is a question mark around the confidence level given what Dubai has been through in the last 10 – 15 years. So the ability to demonstrate a proven track record, particularly on large scale projects, is important. Sobha Hartland is an 8million sq ft parcel of land in the heart of the city. It’s no small feat. Investors need to have some degree of confidence, particularly for a city like Dubai that has been through its ups and downs.

Is the government cutting it a bit fine with the late award of Expo 2020 contracts? What sort of challenge does that bring? Miguel: Working on the Milan Expo 2015, one issue we had was the late award of the contract which put a lot of constraints and difficulties in term of logistics, because you have several contractors working on site at the same time and using the same infrastructure. That makes it harder to deliver on time so it’s important to start as soon as possible and to release contracts early. Zander: In terms of financing, I’m not sure raising finance is the issue but more cash flow seems to be one of the main themes. There’s definitely a reluctance in the market here to pursue the enforcement of contract terms when it comes to contractors receiving funds. Even when payments are delayed and it interrupts the cash cycle it can have practical implications on site. It might not entitle the contractor to slow down or stop works but it has a practical reality. So when you talk about fast tracking projects that’s one of the challenges that always exists in the market here. As things pick up and we go through one of these increases in the cycle it becomes more and more of a challenge that contractors have to deal with and by virtue of that the consultants and clients in the industry. Which one of those challenges is causing the biggest headache? Maged: The time constraint is a major challenge for Expo 2020 which adds more pressure on cash flow. We are almost 30 months away from the event now.

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// Forum

If Expo 2020 didn’t exist what sort of shape would the construction industry be in? Zander: I personally feel that the industry would be in a pretty challenging place right now. It’s difficult to quantify but it’s been a boost in general terms. There’s a push to complete projects. The market is still hungry for more work and there is capacity out there to deliver projects. Expo has been a big part of plugging a big gap that otherwise would have existed. Should we be fearful that after 2020 there will be fewer projects? Zander: There’s a lot of focus on Expo, almost a tunnel vision to 2020 just now. Part of my role at Thomas and Adamson is to look at strategy over both the short and medium to longer term. When we look at 2022 it’s difficult to see what’s going to fill that gap that’s being taken up by Expo just now. There’s definitely a concern in the industry what the sector will look like after 2020. What sort of legacy do you expect Expo 2020 to leave? Miguel: Expo 2020 is a temporary event but it will leave a legacy for the future. We’ve seen that from previous expos that there was a big legacy in terms of facilities and infrastructure. How do you sum up the current state of our industry? Musthafa: I’m very positive about the market and I’m pretty sure that even after Expo there will be growth in the economy, no matter what happens with

oil prices. It’s a temporary situation. Maged: I’m also positive about the market. Dubai started to pick up even before the announcement of the Expo. Since 2012 Dubai started to move again after the crisis. We can’t expect the peak that we saw in 2008 but I still feel positive about the future. Who knows maybe the next challenge will be hosting an Olympics. Expo will force innovation which could bring other opportunities beyond Expo. Zander: There are always challenges in the construction industry. We’re going to see VAT introduced and I’m

I n ass o c i at i on w i t h

Plat in u m S p on s or


D e v e lo p e r Pa rt n e r

// construction business news me // June 2017

not sure anyone fully understands yet what the impact of that will be. There’s cause for optimism but there are also a lot of challenges that companies have to face. Raj: Expo 2020 is a great catalyst for ensuring that some great projects do come out. Dubai has and will continue to have very strong macroeconomic fundamentals. We see the next 15 years being very strong. Miguel: We’re going through an exciting period but we also need to be cautious and be prepared for what’s next.

H el d U nd er th e patr o nag e o f

G o l d S p o ns o r s

S i lv er S p o ns o r


Raj Chinai - Managing Director – Sobha Group Raj Chinai joined Sobha Group in 2014 as Director, with the primary responsibility of overseeing sales and marketing efforts for Sobha Hartland, a $4bn mixed-use project in the heart of Dubai. In 2015, Raj was appointed as Managing Director (MD) of Sobha Group. As the MD, he works in close collaboration with Mr. PNC Menon, the company’s Founder & Chairman, on executing the company’s short and long-term strategic objectives.

Mohammed Jafer Musthafa Managing Director - Daemaar Group Mohammed Jafer Musthafa is a passionate, entrepreneurial leader with an extensive background in engineering. After gaining experience with the ADNOC Group in Abu Dhabi, he completed a Master’s Degree in Petroleum from Herriot Watt University, Dubai before using his life savings to start his own company. The quick success of Daemaar Contracting led to the founding of Daemaar Group as a holding company for six-standalone firms covering Construction, Facility Management, Trading and Retail.

Zander Muego - Director with Thomas & Adamson Zander Muego is a Director with Thomas & Adamson, an international consultancy providing a range of professional services to the construction and property sector. He has significant experience in the planning and control of construction projects across a wide range of sectors, including residential, hospitality, office, retail, industrial and education. He has gained extensive experience over his 17 year career delivering a wide portfolio of public and private sector projects in both the UK and UAE.

Maged El Hawary - Project Controls Director at Al Shafar General Contracting (ASGC) Maged El Hawary is currently a Project Controls Director in ASGC (Al Shafar General Contracting LLC). He has 20 years of successful experience in all aspects of Project Management, Planning, Risk Management, Cost Control and Earned Value Management in key international companies and was managing major projects in Residential & Commercial, Oil & Gas, and Industrial sectors. Maged is a Guest Lecturer in Heriot-Watt University and President of AACEI, UAE. He is a professional speaker and panelist in many international conferences.

Miguel Da Gama - Projects Manager – Cimolai Rimond Miguel is a Civil Engineer Master in Construction Management & Certified Project Management Professional with 10 year experience in Construction projects. Miguel is Currently the Project Manager for the Masdar Visitor Center Project under construction in Masdar city. The project was originally built as a temporary structure UAE Pavilion for EXPO Milan 2015 and transported to UAE & ReConstructed to be a permanent Visitor Center for Masdar City.

construction business news me // June 2017 //


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*As per survey conducted by IPSOS in UAE, Egypt and KSA, 80 % of the respondents agreed that Jotashield is the number 1 exterior paint brand in the market. // construction business news me // June 2017

Jotashield is the No.1 exterior paint brand in the Middle East.*

// Machinery & Vehicles

Muscle & Might Our monthly review of the workhorses of the construction industry

48 News 52 UD Trucks

Time for Croner in the region

54 Safety first

Volvo Trucks begins roll-out of safety features in the GCC

58 Demolition Demonstration

A special job in South Korea needs a special excavator

60 Digital revolutionaries

Fear of an Uber-style takeover of construction is driving Caterpillar and Uptake’s IoT transformation

64 Man Trucks

The German company is putting safety first construction business news me // June 2017 //




Greater uptime promised for new SDLG loaders

Volvo's Chinese manufacturing subsidiary SDLG says its new F-Series wheel loaders for the Middle East and Africa offer greater uptime than previous models. SDLG has launched four wheel loaders for both markets as part of its new F-series: the L953F, L956F, L958F and L968F wheel loaders. The manufacturer says that it has made a number of technical improvements to improve productivity, reliability and uptime. “Customers are increasingly demanding reliable construction equipment at affordable prices,” said SDLG product manager Henrik Sjöstrand. “This is SDLG’s specialty. This new range has been specially engineered for high productivity and reliability, and will 48

provide customers with an excellent return on investment.” SDLG hopes the wheel loaders can help it capitalise on large-scale infrastructure projects, as well as quarrying, which continue to operate at strong levels in both the Middle East and Africa. “The most noticeable difference is the design of the new machines,” said Sjöstrand. “The larger cab design adds 20% more glazing for improved visibility, safety and efficiency. Superior air conditioning has also been added for greater operator comfort, while the single joystick guarantees precise, easy and comfortable operation of the loader arm and bucket, reducing operator fatigue.” A high breakout force and

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a new bucket design provide improved productivity and ease of operation. The machines’ bucket volumes range from 3m3 in the L953F to 3.5m3 in the L968F. In addition, a wide range of attachments are available to ensure versatility. The machines also feature an improved axle design for added support. Where the rear drive axle on the L-series is mounted to the auxiliary frame, the F-series’ rear drive axles are mounted to the swing frame, providing larger oscillation and better stability and traction. “The new series has been designed to ensure that service and maintenance can be handled easily, with excellent accessibility throughout the machine,” added Sjöstrand. “Easier

and more affordable maintenance is something our Middle Eastern and African customers are increasingly demanding. So, we’ve optimized the maintenance intervals to provide greater uptime, with parts availability that is much more affordable. This is backed up by SDLG’s superb dealer network, which is ready to support its customers’ maintenance and repair needs when required.” He concluded: “We have already received a great deal of interest in the new series. We expect its specifications to exceed the demands of our customers. Those looking for highperforming, reliable, easily operable and cost-effective wheel loader need look no further than SDLG.”


Masetti to power Raimondi new markets push

Practical new look for CASE machinery

Mauro Masetti

KBW Investments-owned Raimondi Cranes has appointed Mauro Masetti as its new commercial director. The tower crane company has described his recruitment as a key step in its strategic push into new markets around the world. The Italian company has expanded rapidly into overseas territories such as North America, the Middle East and Australia in recent years, and Masetti is tasked with guiding sales growth in both current and future markets. Masetti is a veteran of heavy lifting machinery and has more than two decades of market experience in the segment across several European and North American markets. His diverse background in sales, client servicing and after-sales servicing is strategically in line with Raimondi’s ambitious global expansion plans, said the company. “Raimondi is recognised worldwide in the competi-

tive tower cranes industry as a milestone manufacturer with a brand hallmark of reliability and durability. Leading the company’s sales arm is the most attractive aspect of my new position, and I also consider it as a field test of the experience I have accumulated through my years in the profession,” said Masetti. Ahmed Alkhoshaibi, CEO, Raimondi Cranes, said the experienced executive was a perfect fit for the company. “To further develop and continue with our aggressive growth strategy, it was integral that a market veteran with demonstrated industry commercial savvy was appointed to the executive team to take decisive steps forward,” he said. “Mauro, with his deep roots in the tower crane community and the right drive to expand an already highlydeveloped portfolio, was the perfect fit to head the commercial team.”

CASE Construction Equipment has renewed the livery on its products to reflect the “values of the brand” including its practical, hands-on approach. The new styling is also part of CASE’s ongoing strategy to strengthen its branding while consolidating its position in all markets. CASE’s owner CNH Industrial recently announced new agreements with Sumitomo and Hyundai Heavy Industries as well as the redevelopment and rebranding of its San Mauro and Lecce plants to create the CASE European Excavator and Wheeled Equipment Hubs. According to CASE, the new styling and livery, which were developed in collaboration with CNH Industrial’s Design Centre, make a “strong brand statement.” CASE has famously used a bald eagle logo (based on Old Abe, a mascot

for an American Civil War regiment) on its equipment since 1865, a revised Power Abe metallic badge is displayed on every machine, “celebrating the CASE brand’s rich heritage and looking forward to the future.” Elsewhere the livery features a new dark grey colour on the lower part of the machines and the interiors have been designed to create a styling specific to CASE that will shared by all models – from the common seat design to the dashboard and interior colours. “Our aim with this project was, on the exterior, to create a design language that reflects solidity and precision, while giving a look specific to the CASE brand that reflects its history and its values and that is common to all models,” said David Wilkie, director CNH Industrial Design Centre.

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Breakthrough for Chicago Pneumatic in Kuwait

Chicago Pneumatic has described its deal for 25 light towers via authorised distributor General Transportation & Equipment Company (GTE) for a key project in Kuwait as a “breakthrough” for its presence in the country. The order for CPLT V15 LED light towers - the first sale of the units in the Middle East - will provide crucial illumination for a time-sensitive oilfield construction project being carried out by local contractor Al Yousifi Engineering and Construction Company, said Chicago Pneumatic. "The CPLT V15 LED is highly efficient, making it ideal for projects requiring a large number of light towers. With this model, users can save on both fuel and maintenance costs," said Ejazul Hassan, the equipment sales manager for GTE. "For instance, the LED’s lifespan is 30,000 50

hours, compared to 6,000 hours provided by a metal halide bulb. This means the CPLT V15 LED’s bulbs don’t need to be replaced for approximately three years." According to Amjad Fallatah, the regional product manager for Chicago Pneumatic Construction Equipment, because of the harsh conditions that the light towers are likely to operate in, the CPLT V15 LED features a polyethylene canopy that protects vital internal components. "This ensures peak performance and optimises the light tower’s lifespan and resale value. Not only is the canopy durable, it also features wide wing doors to allow easy maintenance access to the machine, including service components and drains. The light tower also has an environmentally friendly frame that prevents any excess fluid escaping," he said.

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Hino launches new medium duty truck in UAE

Dealer Al-Futtaim Motors (AFM) has launched the redesigned medium duty Hino 500 Series truck in the UAE. The new vehicle is the second launch in two months from the Japanese manufacturer following the introduction of the Hino 300 series hybrid. The 2017 Hino 500 Series features a redesigned exterior, a host of enhanced safety features and improved driver comfort. According to AFM, the development of the truck was focused on quality, durability and reliability, but it was also purpose-built to suit the needs of the local market to support customers’ businesses. “This year is proving very positive for Hino, as we continue to grow our market share and introduce new products that meet our customers’ needs,” said Ramez Hamdan, general manager of Hino at Al-Futtaim Motors. “Just last month, we launched the UAE’s first hybrid truck

in the form of the Hino 300 Series hybrid, and the introduction of the Hino 500 Series allows us to offer a different solution to meet multiple sectors looking for a reliable truck that offers a host of advanced safety and driver comfort features.” He added: “With companies increasingly aware of the need to reduce emissions and reliance on fossil fuels, the Hino 500 Series also maximises efficiency and significantly reduces consumption thanks to class-leading engine and transmission choices.” The medium duty Hino500 Series offers a wide possibility of applications, such as tipper trucks, curtain siders, reefer trucks as well as general cargo, making it a real all-rounder. The truck also features a range of safety features including ABS, Front Underrun Protection System (FUPS), Rear Underrun Protection System (RUPS) and much more.


World’s first electric excavator unveiled

Volvo Construction Equipment (CE) used its Volvo Group Innovation Summit last month to unveil the EX2, which is believed to be the world’s first electric compact excavator. Volvo CE claims that the machine delivers zero emissions and is ten times higher in efficiency, ten times lower in noise levels and offers reduced total cost of ownership compared to traditional diesel-powered equivalents. To make the EX2 prototype fully electric, the combustion engine has been replaced with two lithium ion batteries, totaling 38KWh, which store enough electric energy to operate the machine for eight hours in an intense application, such as digging compact ground. The hydraulic architecture has also been replaced with electric architecture which incorporates electromechanical linear actuators that help to optimize the transmission

chain. Removing the hydraulic system and the combustion engine, as well as reducing the cooling needs, has led to significantly lower noise levels. At this stage, the EX2 is purely a research project and there are currently no plans for industrialisation. “In line with the Volvo Group’s vision to be the most desired and successful transport solution provider in the world, Volvo CE is committed to contributing to sustainable development,” said Thomas Bitter, SVP of marketing and product portfolio. “At Volvo CE we are developing technologies connected to electromobility, intelligent machines and total site solutions that will benefit our customers and the environment by contributing to increased machine performance, productivity, efficiency, safety and sustainability. Our future products and services will play an important part in building a sustainable society.”


Middle East steady as Liebherr reports strong 2016

German construction giant Liebherr Group says that sales in the Middle East maintained their 2015 levels despite challenging market conditions. The Liebherr Group reported strong financial results for 2016, with a turnover of EUR 9.01bn ($10.1bn), although revenue was down by $248mn or 2.5 percent compared to a record 2015. The company said it managed to record this performance in a difficult market environment and it is the third-highest turnover in the group's history. In the Near and Middle East, sales remained at the previous year’s level, while Russia and Poland led a positive increase In Eastern Europe. A slight fall was recorded was recorded in North America. Africa and the Far East / Australia, all saw turnover fall below the previous year's level. Much of the decline of revenue in the group can be attributed to the construction machinery and mining equipment divisions which include

earthmoving, mining, mobile cranes, tower cranes and concrete technology. Sales revenue fell by $248 million, said Liebherr, however earthmoving, where the Middle East accounts for 0.9 percent of sales, only experienced a slight decline of 0.7 percent. A larger decrease was experienced in mobile cranes which decreased by $96mn. Liebherr Group described the fall in sales in the Near and Middle East as significant. The region contributed to 5.4 percent of sales. Likewise there was a further “significant” fall in tower crane sales in the region. Performance was further hampered by sales declines in the Near and Middle East of concrete technology which contribute 15.4% to overall division revenues. “In the Near and Middle East, Saudi Arabia, one of the division’s most important individual markets ground to an almost complete halt in the second half of the year,” said Liebherr.

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// Vehicle launch

Time for Croner in the region


Named after the Greek of time, UD Trucks’ Croner makes its debut in Dubai By Matthew Treanor

D Truck’s Croner mediumduty truck was unveiled at an expensive-looking and glitzy launch ceremony in Dubai’s Studio City last month but this is a vehicle aimed at fleets with modest budgets. There was a time when the Middle East, or to be more precise, the GCC largely ignored the marketing blurb about efficiency and driver comfort that was emblazoned over manufacturer brochures. Fleets purchasing has been pretty much based on three Ps: price, prestige and payload for decades. However there has been a slow but significant shift in buying habits towards trucks that run for longer and offer a better total cost of ownership effectively opening the door for manu52

facturers that may have previously been seen as niche brands. Despite falls in the crude oil price, diesel has continued to creep upwards. The UAE’s ministry of energy’s latest figures, for instance, show that the price of diesel rose from AED 1.6 last May per litre to AED 1.97 in May 1017 – an increase of 13 percent. Inflation is also continuing to rise. Furthermore, the introduction of VAT, while placing more funds into the government coffers which in turn could stimulate project financing, will also put more pressure onto fleet and contractor costs. The Croner has been named after the Greek god of time because the manufacturer prioritised vehicle uptime during its development, but the

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launch could also prove timely for those in the market for new trucks. Designed with customers' demand and business needs in mind, Croner is engineered to help UD’s customers stay ahead of competition through the simple concept of saving time. “UD Trucks understands that more time spent on the road and less time in the workshop drives success for our customers' businesses,” said Mourad Hedna, UD Trucks Middle East, East and North Africa president. “It is our aim for Croner to make every moment count, through maximising productivity and minimising downtime on every run our customers make.” UD Trucks has designed the Croner range specifically for growth markets across the Middle East, Asia,

Africa and South America. It is also a rare example of a major release of range in this region coinciding with a global launch. Prior to the May event, Jacques Michel, president, Volvo Group Trucks Asia & JVs Sales, UD Trucks explained to CBNME that the truck had already been deployed by a customer in the region as part of its global test programme. “We have been testing and running the truck for 1.4 million kilometres in six different countries, some that are very high altitudes like Peru. It is running on the roads of Thailand and Indonesia, as well as South Africa,” he said. The founder of UD, Kenzo Adachi, was keen that his company built the “truck that the world needs today” and Michel said that customer feedback shaped the Croner’s development. Consequently, the desire of buyers to get more bang for their buck from their trucks was scribbled onto the Croner’s design boards in Japan. “When we start with a concept, you have a lot of ideas internally. Fortunately we have a lot of people with

It is our aim for Croner to make every moment count, through maximising productivity and minimising downtime on every run our customers make” great ideas which is good but the most important thing is to listen to customers,” he explained to CBNME. “We had to find out about their experience with UD Trucks, how they see the future changing. We worked with our customers all the way through the development. We went out of our design centre in Japan and went to the market. I think that has been the most important thing.” The net result is a truck that meets UD’s aims of producing a reliable and versatile truck range built with robust

and quality components with the promise of delivering extra productivity and superior uptime. Croner offers options for three gross vehicle weight (GVW) models: MKE, LKE and PKE; and their wheelbase variants, offering up to 21 different configurations to suit specific demands of various industries. Additionally, the air suspension on all variants is available as an option to protect customers' cargo, especially when travelling on rough road conditions. “The 11t has been a backbone in the past,” Michel told CBNME. “Of course construction is very big so you’ve got a mixer and tipper which can support that segment and infrastructure developments and general construction.” UD Trucks has been part of the Volvo Group since 2007 and a decade down the line, its latest range retains its strong Japanese heritage and craftsmanship but also utilises Volvo Group's global technology and sourcing while plugging into local manufacturing and customer support. “Further to that, with UD Trucks' ultimate dependability standard and gemba spirit [a Japanese word meaning where value is created] incorporated in every aspect, each component is the result of years of development and stringent stress testing, a true testament to the Japanese hallmarks of quality,” says the company. 'Going the Extra Mile’ is a brand promise of UD Trucks. The focus on fuel efficiency, uptime, reliability and drivability, while meeting today's high standards for safety and environment, enable UD Trucks to provide Middle East customers with, what it claims is the best products and services in the market to meet their business needs. UD Trucks offers a comprehensive set of what it labels UD Extra Mile Support services, such as UD Genuine Service and Parts, UD Driver Training, and UD Trust Service Agreements. These, the company says, were developed to ensure its trucks, such as the Croner, run and remain in optimum condition to go the extra mile, saving minutes, hours, and days over the years.

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// Commercial vehicles

Safety first Volvo Trucks begins roll-out of safety features in the GCC By Matthew Treanor


he Volvo brand has championed safety for decades. While the truck and heavy vehicle operation has long been separated from its passenger car sister company (which was sold first to Ford in 1999 and then later to China’s Geely in 2010), its latest generation of vehicles continue the tradition of placing driver safety at the centre of its development. Senior executives from the company held a special briefing in Dubai last month on the famous Swedish marque’s advances in protecting both the driver and other users on the road. At the event it was revealed that the company is rolling out five new features – starting with Saudi Arabia - across their 54

FH, FMX and FM ranges designed to improve uptime and lower costs of industry truck operators working in the challenging climate and terrains of Middle East countries. Volvo Trucks’ president Claes Nilsson told those present that the company delivered more than 102,800 vehicles last year and that it, “provides complete transport solutions for professional and demanding customers, offering a full range of medium to heavy duty trucks.” Relatively speaking the Middle East may be one of the smaller markets in which Volvo Trucks operates, but it has proven to be highly receptive of the company’s most recent range launches and adoption rates, in the UAE especially, of tech-

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nologies such as its I-Shift transmission have been strong. Nilsson revealed that the company exported 1,277 vehicles to Saudi Arabia last year making it Volvo Trucks’ 25th largest export market (the US ranks first with a 18,379). Given its success in the Kingdom and its wellestablished route to market via Zahid Tractor, the company has agreed to offer its best safety features as standard on the long-haul FH from 2018. Beyond the sales numbers, this was really an opportunity to get an insight into how one of the world’s leading manufacturers believes that the region can benefit from leading edge technology that it may have eschewed in the past. Pioneering technology sits at the

The view from the EU

very heart of Volvo Trucks’ design and engineering and, through the years, it has produced the worldclass safety standards and drive comfort that the Swedish manufacturer is renowned for. Several decades ago, Volvo engineers were the first to develop the three-point safety belt and today it is at the vanguard of utilising IT systems on its trucks. It continues to set new standards with the range of technological advances, treading new ground and setting the benchmark for the rest of the industry. Claes described Volvo’s Trucks as “a driving force in the development of electro-mobility, automation and connectivity”, all technologies that are very much on the cutting edge of truck design. He added that any progress it is making remains thoroughly rooted in “the core values of quality, safety and environmental care.” As an example of its position at the forefront of vehicle technology, Volvo Trucks recently tested the world’s first fully autonomous truck deep underground in the dangerous environment of the Kristineberg Mine in northern Sweden. The truck was part of a development project that is on a mission to transform technical breakthroughs into practical customer benefits. With safety a top priority, the self-driving truck uses various sensors to continuously monitor its surroundings and avoids both fixed and moving obstacles. At the same time, an on-board transport system

More vehicles on the roads, a faster traffic flow and a distracting stream of information all impose considerable demands on both commercial vehicle drivers and car drivers. On the other hand, there has never been more opportunities for the person behind the wheel to drive more safely than there is today. The active safety systems found in many modern cars and trucks within the EU make it far easier to avoid incidents and accidents. As of November 2015 there is an EUwide legal requirement for new two- and three-axle heavy trucks to be equipped with the function automatic emergency brake. The aim is to reduce accidents in which a truck drives into the back of a vehicle in front of the truck, an accident scenario that accounts for about one-fifth of all road accidents involving trucks. At present, legislation requires that the emergency braking system must reduce the truck´s speed by 10 km/h. Next year, this will be tightened to 20 km/h. "It's great that the legislation is becoming stricter but I still feel the legal requirements are too low. If you are driving at 80 km/h when the emergency braking system is deployed, you need to cut your speed by far more than just 20 km/h to avoid a massive collision if the vehicle in front has come to a standstill," says Carl Johan Almqvist, traffic & product safety director at Volvo Trucks. Volvo Trucks has developed a system that goes well beyond both current and future legal requirements. The system, which was introduced in 2012, focuses primarily on alerting the driver to the risk of a collision. "In many cases this is enough for the driver to quickly assess the situation and avoid an accident," explains Almqvist. The emergency brake is only used if it is absolutely necessary, and it is deployed extremely quickly. The braking speed - or retardation to use the correct technical term - is about 7 m/sec2, which is on par with what many passenger cars can manage. In practice this means that the truck's speed can be cut from 80 to 0

km/h in about 40 metres. The system monitors the vehicles in front with the help of camera and radar technology and functions irrespective of whether it is sunshine, mist, fog or darkness. If there is a risk of collision, the driver is alerted via gradually escalating light and acoustic signals. If the system does not detect a response from the driver, the truck automatically starts braking gently. If the driver still does not respond, the emergency brake is deployed until the vehicle comes to a complete standstill. After a further five seconds without any movement of the steering wheel or other reaction, the handbrake is automatically engaged, a safety measure to prevent the truck from rolling if the driver is in shock or is unconscious. When the emergency brake is deployed, the brake lights start flashing to warn vehicles to the rear, and when the truck's speed drops to 5 km/h the flashing emergency warning lights are also activated. Volvo's system also functions on curvy roads and can differentiate between roadside guard rails and genuine obstacles such as vehicles including motorbikes. In order to gain the full benefit of the system, it is essential to ensure that all functions, such as the ABS brakes, are activated on both truck and trailer. Considering the short period that has passed since the introduction of emergency brake legislation, it will take some time before its positive effects are reflected in accident statistics. However, Volvo Trucks is convinced of the benefits of the emergency braking system and other active safety devices. "Our active safety systems are part of a holistic solution that clearly helps reduce risks in traffic, but it is important to bear in mind that technology alone cannot do the job. A safe traffic environment requires active interaction between all road users. An experienced, attentive driver who handles his or her vehicle responsibly is still the best form of accident prevention," says Almqvist.

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// Commercial vehicles

gathers data to optimise and coordinate the route and fuel consumption. More importantly perhaps for the construction industry is the I-Shift which saw an optional crawler gear launch last year. The I-Shift reduces the risk of accidents by removing the possibility of common driver mistakes such as not engaging the engine brake when going downhill, not engaging the correct gear, or driving at a very high RPM. With I-Shift, all of these driving mistakes are avoided and the truck driver can focus on the road, become more fuel efficient and reduce the wear and tear of his clutch, gearbox and brake pads. Volvo also offers a specially optimised I-Shift for severe duty applications. This rugged version of the I-Shift automated manual transmission is engineered for a wide range of construction and oil field applications. The gears and the hardware in the severe-duty I-Shift have been hardened to withstand frequent shifting in rugged operational environ56

ments like the varied landscapes and topography found throughout the Middle East. The enhanced I-Shift gearbox now offers more efficiency for the Middle East. “The varied landscapes and topographies of the Middle East are some of the world’s most challenging when it comes to transport operations,” said Giovanni Bruno, VP, MEENA. “However, this is where Volvo Trucks excels, via our pioneering design and technology, we have a long and proud legacy in supporting our customers handle heavy loads even in challenging off-road terrain and harsh climate only found in the Middle East.” The new crawler gear technology was tested to its limits in the Port of Gothenberg in 2016 with a FH16 production model, the most powerful in the FH series, completing an astonishing challenge, pulling a 750t 40-trailer land train from standstill over 100 metres to demonstrate the remarkable capabilities of the gear-

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box. The enhanced option for the I-Shift automatic gearbox can drive as slowly as 0.5-2 km/h and can start off from standstill while safely hauling 325t, a unique achievement for series-produced trucks with an automated gearbox. Embodying this commitment to innovation is the technology that has gone into developing the FH series not only making them robust and durable to withstand the variable road conditions and extreme climate of the Middle East, but also one of the safest, most comfortable and easiest models to drive, claims Volvo. Developed for tough environments, Volvo Automatic Traction Control, which is already used on Volvo’s articulated haulers, is now standard on the Volvo FMX frontwheel-drive trucks; 4x4, 6x6, 8x6, 10x6. The system offers drivers improved manoeuvrability and fleet owners the a‎ dded benefits of lower fuel consumption and decreased wear and tear. The system ensures

that the ‎optimal drive combination is always enabled, removing the decision from the driver. The system also consists of software connected to the wheels’ speed sensors, which detect and control wheel drive. When a rear wheel starts to slip, power is transferred automatically to the front wheels without the truck losing torque or speed. A coupling clutch activates the front-wheel drive in just half a second. Volvo Trucks’ introduction of dual front axles for heavy-duty models increase the maximum technical capacity from 18t to 20t. According to the Swedish truck-maker, the extra load capacity translates directly into “increased income-earning potential, something that is particularly valuable when transporting heavy materials in construction operations.” Higher load capacity above the front axles also permits a greater variety of crane configurations and allows other applications with considerable weight on the front axles. Another feature, Volvo Dynamic Steering combines conventional hydraulic power steering with an electronically regulated electric motor fitted to the steering gear. The result is precise steering that gives the truck driver a safer, more comfortable and more enjoyable working environment. Designed and engineered with drivers in mind, the system can reduce wear-and-tear injuries on drivers, keeping them on the road which in turn benefits business productivity. Bruno believes that Volvo Trucks product offering is stronger than ever: “We have a wide range of trucks that cover the needs of most applications and the service and support provided by our local dealer network and service facilities are second to none. Altogether, our trucks, products and services offer the best solution for every need. We are also continuously improving, expanding and developing our products to meet new and specific customer needs.”

The varied landscapes and topographies of the Middle East are some of the world’s most challenging when it comes to transport operations” Giovanni Bruno (left) and Claes Nilsson

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// Demolition

Razing Standards A special job in South Korea needs a special excavator By Matthew Treanor

The first EC480EHR in the country being put to work


n the Middle East, and the Gulf Countries in particular, contractors typically use large excavators, explosives or wrecking balls to bring down buildings depending on whether they are clearing space for new buildings or, as is quite common, surgically removing parts of a structure to add new sections. South Korean companies, however, have for decades taken a top-down approach, preferring to place their equipment at the summit of a building before clawing their way back down to earth. In an effort to steer his industry away from this dangerous approach and prompt changes to government regulations, Doh Moon-gil, CEO and chairman of demolition Sungdo Con-


struction has set-out to prove that it is possible to bring down buildings from the ground up but his company has needed a very special machine to do it. Sungdo Construction was founded in 1979 and the family run company has become South Korea’s leading demolition firm. Moon-gil’s company has forged a reputation for its work in high-profile demolition projects across the country. In 1995, Sungdo Construction played a considerable part in the clean-up operation of the Sampoong department store in Seoul where, in the largest peacetime disaster in the country’s history, 500 people died after the building collapsed. It also later helped reshape the centre of the coun-

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try’s capital in 2002 when it dismantled the 5km of concrete that was the Cheonggye elevated highway. When faced with the task of demolishing the ten-storey hospital in the city of Changwon, Moon-gil believed the company could feasibly bring down the unstable and ageing building by opting to deploy a large excavator rather than placing a machine on the roof. Moon-gil realised that by choosing the Volvo EC480EHR ultra high-reach excavator – the first of its kind to be used in the country – he could also achieve his goal of encouraging higher safety standards in Korea’s demolition industry as well as successfully completing the project.

Sungdo Construction’s CEO recalls how the construction business has been a ‘foundation’ of Korea’s postwar economic development – helping to propel it from one of the world’s poorest countries in the 1950s to one of the wealthiest – but feels, when it comes to safety regulations in the international construction industry, the country has not yet caught up with global norms. “It is common practice in the Korean construction industry to lift a conventional excavator on to the top of a building and dig down, which increases the possibility of collapse,” Moon-gil explains. “High-reach demolition is safer for operators, as well as anyone else at the project site. And there are some projects where a normal excavator just can’t get the job done – this hospital demolition was one of them.” The Volvo EC480EHR offered Sungdo Construction the extra height it needed with a 3.4m extension to the standard 28m long boom. As the first ultra-high-reach excavator in South Korea, Moon-gil believes that it will open the door to new opportunities for his company, in addition to elevating safety standards in the country. Keeping Moon-gil and his team safe on the job, the ultra-high-reach excavator has a steel frame-mounted Falling Object Guard (FOG) cabin and reinforced windows to protect the operator from being struck by debris. Cameras on the boom, rear and sides of the machine allow for views of the entire work area. Mun In-hwan, one of Sungdo Construction’s most experienced operators, says he could confidently use the excavator to bring down mounds of concrete and rebar. Over his 14-year career as an excavator operator, he has had ‘several close calls with death’. And as a father, he wants to feel sure that he will always be able to return home at the end of the day in the same condition he started. “Doing the work without a highreach machine would be really dangerous considering how unstable this building is,” he says.

EC480EHR operator Mun In-hwan

In seven days we were able to complete what would normally take ten days. I’m advocating for the implementation of new safety regulations” From left: Sungdo Construction President and CEO Doh Moon-Gil, Managing Director Doh Hyung-rok, Director Min Young-suk

Towering far above the 4m-high, aluminum barricades that surround the 18,000m² job site, the machine could not be missed. Fitted with a 3t sheering tool that can slice through metal and cement, In-hwan says he had never felt safer while on a job than when he was operating the excavator. In addition to the safety features of the EC480EHR, the machine also has a dust suppression system, which was a real benefit considering the hospital worksite sits adjacent to the new Samsung Changwon Hospital. Leading the way for the Korean demolition industry, Sungdo Construction has previously devised new demolition methods and founder Moon-gil hopes the use of highreach machines will become standard

practice. Though he realises that enhancing the quality and safety of demolition in his country will not come easy, he believes his position as chairman of the Construction Policy Committee, which is part of the Korea Specialty Contractors Association, will help him to improve industry standards. “Not only did the high-reach excavator improve working conditions, it also increased our work rate,” said Moon-gil. “In seven days we were able to complete what would normally take ten days. I’m advocating for the implementation of new safety regulations. Once these are adopted, I hope the demand for more high-reach demolition machines, like the Volvo EC480EHR, will also increase.”

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// Machinery Telematics

Digital revolutionaries Fear of an Uber-style takeover of construction is driving Caterpillar and Uptake’s IoT transformation By Matthew Treanor


f you’re in the construction industry in the Middle East, you’ve probably caught yourself peering into someone else’s job site to pass a critical eye over how a crane has been positioned or how a fleet of loaders is moving. If you work for a data analytics company, you’ve probably stared at the same view and imagined all the different moving parts in action and the vast amount of information – tyre pressure, 60

speed, incoming delivery schedules, even the weather – that could be used to make the project tick ever more smoothly. The industry has been obsessing over how to best use technology such as telematics to coordinate construction projects for at least two decades but the next step could be the biggest yet. The much uttered but frequently misunderstood Internet of Things (IoT)

// construction business news me // June 2017

- the all-encompassing concept of how machines, devices and vehicles loaded with sensors and electronics can share data over a network – promises to tie entire jobsites together in a way that the industry is only just beginning to realise. Even a company with the resources of Caterpillar, the world’s largest equipment producer, has had to look for outside inspiration as it tackles the challenge of how this will work in practice.

Enter Uptake, a Chicago-based data analytics firm, which is coming at the problem from the other side. Startlingly, Caterpillar is its first official client (apart from renewable energy company Berkshire Hathaway Energy others remain under the radar) but the start-up is going places fast. Already valued at $2 billion, the company is rated as one of the Windy City’s fastest growing tech companies, and is working with, what it describes as, iconic names in a diverse range of sectors including agriculture, energy and healthcare. Its work with its fellow Illinois-based machine maker client is, for now, the one it most wants to talk about. Trevor Mecham, vice president of construction and agriculture at Uptake, explained that the construction industry has much to gain from using data to optimise manufacturing, maintenance, logistics and operations. “It’s certainly in the billions of dollars,” said Mecham. “Rather than a one-sizefits-all solution, we are partnering with Caterpillar and other companies to build predictive analytics solutions that solve challenges unique to the industry.” His colleague Bradley Joseph, president of business ventures and blogger on Uptake’s site, uses a term familiar to the world of big data houses called collaborative disruption to describe the company’s model for working with the behemoths that straddle some of the world’s biggest industries. “Collaborative disruption is the way to make a digitisation partnership truly impactful,” he said. “In this model, digital expertise meets deep industry experience. And the partners co-create real-world solutions at every step of the innovation journey. It brings together players from multiple industries and areas of expertise. It allows companies and their partners to innovate across a shared ecosystem and align solutions to real-world problems. And to do so faster, with deeper impact, and greater sustainability.” Uptake believes the construction industry with the commoditisation and decreased costs of telematics, both in terms of hardware and connectivity, could save billions of dollars and usher

The data gained from construction can be as specific as the tyre pressure on a single machine, or as general as the schedule and budget of an entire project” in an era of new efficiencies in operations and capital management. Its studies of the US construction industry have highlighted a slowness to adopt telematics and the so-called industrial IoT due to several factors that will ring true the world over including a downturned economy and a glut of used equipment that has slowed the purchasing of new machines. However Uptake feels there are now signs that this is beginning to change and is keen to help Caterpillar and others to start taking control of data-related

technologies. The company identifies a recent push from the OEMs and equipment associations to standardise hardware and information throughout the industry, combined with the decreasing cost of telematics and connectivity equipment, as a signal that it is, “on the cusp of generating what could amount to billions of dollars worth of increased uptime, better equipment utilisation, and optimised workflow processes and operations.” Likewise Caterpillar wants to ensure that it takes a leading position as the industry moves to an era of data-driven construction. Seeing the benefits of using data to predict repairs and manage equipment on-site CEO Doug Oberhelman has previously stated that he fears that it could lose its dominant position if it fails to adapt. “If we don’t do this, somebody else will,” he told investors after revealing the company was investing in Uptake to fund development. “We decided that maybe we better disrupt ourselves - in our own way - before somebody does an Uber to us.” Using data to increase efficiency and drive revenue for the construction industry could be a real game changer. For example, sensors on a piece of

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Machinery Telematics

Current linking from Cat

At the recent ConExpo event in Last Vegas, Caterpillar launched its new Cat Connect hardware and software to enable equipment managers to connect all of their assets —from the largest earthmover to the smallest generator, and including both light and heavy-duty trucks and utility vehicles. New Cat Product Link technologies connect any brand and type of equipment, powered or nonpowered, and all report through a single system called VisionLink. The new technologies offer multiple communications channels — mobile, satellite and Bluetooth—to best match the type of asset and the needs of the user. And the systems are designed for easy installation using plug-and-play technology and apps for mobile devices. Battery backup for machine-powered devices and long-life batteries for units on non-powered assets help ensure reliable operation. The new Product Link device for monitoring production machines has scalable features that enable increasing data collected as needed — from machine hours and location through machine health parameters and production numbers. In contrast, a new tracking device for non-powered assets, such as attachments and trailers, reports location only. The device uses Bluetooth technology to connect with VisionLink, which enables managers to monitor equipment remotely using their smart phones, tablets and desktop computers. The new truck monitoring hardware is designed for retrofitting all brands of light and heavy-duty trucks, including pickup trucks, service trucks and materials haulers. Using mobile technology, the system can provide information to enhance driver safety and to assist both production and maintenance managers.


// construction business news me // June 2017

equipment could alert owners to a maintenance need. The equipment is then taken offline for a scheduled repair and it’s sent to a shop with a waiting mechanic that specialises in the repair and already has the needed part. Back at the jobsite, another piece of equipment has been scheduled to temporarily fill in. The time and hours saved on just one repair are significant. For Uptake, an example like this barely scratches the surface of what is possible. When data analytics becomes prevalent across the industry, its uses and effects could be staggering, it argues. Contractors could know just how long a piece of equipment can be operated before a repair is needed, down to the hour. Daily job site data gatherings, such as weather, can affect job site preparation and labour. Data can optimise job site schedules; manage fleets of equipment, including their uptime and

utilisation; dealers and rental houses can improve logistics and service. Companies can increase equipment utilisation and decrease downtime for themselves and their customers. Construction schedules can be shortened; workforces could be optimised day-by-day; project management could be transformed. “The data gained from construction can be as specific as the tyre pressure on a single machine, or as general as the schedule and budget of an entire project,” Meacham explained. “Nearly every piece of the construction ecosystem can generate usable data that leads to patterns, and those patterns can lead to predictions that companies can trust.” The Uptake platform gathers both historical and real-time data, and then combines it to be analysed and provide actionable predictions to its users. Results are then fed back into the software platform to further refine and validate

We decided that maybe we better disrupt ourselves - in our own way - before somebody does an Uber to us” its accuracy. This information includes condition monitoring, workflows, logistics fleet management and other streams, such as weather and event-specific information. “To be successful in construction, you really have to know the industry from

the ground up,” Meacham said. “The biggest reason I joined Uptake and think the company will be successful is that we have decades of experience in the space. Sure, we have lots of PhDs and people who specialise in data analysis, but unless we can provide first-hand knowledge of the challenges and opportunities that are unique to this industry, we won’t be able to achieve the kind of large-scale transformation we’re after. He continued: “In the short-term, it’s all about awareness. Lots of companies in construction know that the power of data and telematics will enable them to work better, faster and longer, but right now, it’s ‘how’ will this happen and ‘when’ will there be an impact. In the long-term, it’s about transforming the industry. We know there are billions of dollars to be gained from harnessing the power of data. Over the next generation, this industry will see radical change.”

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Vehicle Safety

A Safe Combination MAN Truck & Bus Middle East is putting safety first as it enters into an exciting partnership with one of the world’s most advanced trailer producers


// construction business news me // June 2017


he past year has seen MAN Truck & Bus Middle East make considerable progress in its effort to raise standards in road safety through a range of initiatives. A newly announced deal with Schmitz Cargobull complements its emphasis on introducing some of the industry’s best engineering expertise into Middle East fleets, says Franz von Redwitz, managing director, MAN Truck & Bus Middle East. “We are fully committed to continuing to offer a full range of services that demonstrate the very best of German engineering and proven safety and comfort,” he comments. MAN Truck & Bus Middle East may be one of the fastest-growing commercial vehicles brands in the Middle East but it is notable for its dedication to improving driver and road safety. At the heart of its product development are the networks of international competence centres and plants in Germany which are continually analysing the performance of vehicles and examining customer feedback on a global scale to ensure it maintains its reputation for robust, reliable, high-quality products. Likewise, Schmitz Cargobull, which manufactures over 50,000 trailers and truck bodies annually at its own German-based competence centres, also serves companies worldwide in areas such as general cargo, refrigerated transport and construction. Franz von Redwitz adds that the partnership draws together two companies that share the common goals of increasing safety in the region as well as the quality of their products and services. “We wanted to partner with a top quality German brand as it ensures the safety of our customers. Schmitz Cargobull is a globally-recognised trailer company that, like us, is also committed to expansion across the Middle East. This deal shows we are investing in quality products that can be tailored and personalised based on customer requirements,” he says. Improving road safety is one of the highest priorities at MAN and the company has developed an array of technologies for its vehicles, as well as training courses, such as its hugely successful ProfiDrive programme, with the aim of reducing accidents and fatalities.

Since launching its safety campaign in the UAE towards the end of 2016, MAN Truck & Bus Middle East has also continued to support the targets set out by the UAE Vision 2021 road safety programme, a national effort to lower accident rates and fatalities. It has formed a strong working relationship with Abu Dhabi Police, helping to instruct the public and private sectors with training and insight into the latest technology that can save the lives of drivers and other road-users. Together with Schmitz Cargobull, the company can now offer arguably the safest range of truck and tipper trailer combinations available in the market with features such as MAN’s electronic braking system (EBS) and anti-lock braking system (ABS) as standard. Fleets, heavy haulers and construction contractors will also be able to work use the expertise of both companies to create the ideal vehicle for their requirements. “We are partnering up to provide top German quality solutions in the market. The trucks and trailers will come with ABS and EBS brakes making the combinations a safe solution on the UAE roads.” As its range of products and services expands MAN Truck & Bus Middle East is also investing in its facilities and network across the Middle East. The company opened its new headquarters in Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA) last month and for the first time its operations, new sales and training teams are now housed with its successful outlet for used commercial vehicles, MAN TopUsed Center. According to Franz von Redwitz, the move makes sense for the company and for its customers and will boost its growing momentum in the region: “MAN Truck & Bus Middle East has moved to the new location in order to be linked with our TopUsed team. This initiative brings the entire team together in order to provide a full range of services, and sufficiently support importers and users across the Middle East." He concludes: "We are focused on the Middle East market and our investment in new products and facilities proves our long-term commitment to expansion across the region.”

This deal shows we are investing in quality products that can be tailored and personalised based on customer requirements”

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Supplier News

Steel piping

Interpipe launches service to fight steel counterfeiting

Global steel pipe producer, Interpipe has launched an online service that securely verifies its pipe products and reduces counterfeiting. Labels are each imprinted

with a QR code with encrypted details unique to the customer order. Every code is linked to the company’s database of shipped orders. To check the origin of the

bundle, customers just have to scan the code via their smartphones. If the pipes are genuine, the consignee will be redirected to the webpage with details such as the vol-

ume of products, the number of inspection certificate, date of shipment and heat number. Otherwise, the customer will be notified about the possibility of counterfeiting and provided with the contact details for the regional sales office to verify the supply. Andrey Burtsev, Commercial Director for Middle East, Africa and Asia markets, Interpipe, said: “QRcodes on these pipe bundles will be a very effective first step to mitigate counterfeiting. This easy-to-use and technically advanced tool allows our customers to verify the origin of the bundle in just one click.” Access to such an online verification service that tracks pipe origin provides an onsite check of the bundle origin for both distributors and end-users. The service is part of Interpipe’s extensive campaign to defend its brand and secure anti-counterfeiting measures around the GCC.

Leminar wins International Safety Award Leminar Air Conditioning Industries, a specialist in HVAC ductwork manufacturing in the region, has won an International Safety Award from the British Safety Council. The International Safety Awards, which is now in its 59th year, recognise organisations from around the world which have demonstrated to the scheme’s independent judges their commitment to preventing workplace injuries and workrelated ill health. Mike Robinson, Chief Executive of the British Safety Council, congratulated Leminar on their success in winning an International Safety Award 2017: “By celebrating and sharing the achievements of the winners of the International Safety Awards, we encourage businesses all over the world to follow


// construction business news me // June 2017

their lead and place employees’ health and safety at the heart of their business.” Dipak Bhadra, General Manager, Leminar Air Conditioning Industries, said: “We ensure that every single one of our workers is provided with all the necessary safety gear and there is no compromise on health and safety standards. We are proud to note that since our new facility was opened in December 2015, there have not been any safety incidents till date.” Leminar is one of the largest manufacturer of HVAC products ranging from Sheet metal GI ducts with CGF 1 type flange system, Fire Rated ducts, Spiral round duct, Sound Attenuators, Acoustic Louvers, Volume Control Dampers, VAV Boxes, Fire Dampers and other accessories.

Water technology

Xylem opens new office in Saudi Arabia Water technology specialist, Xylem has opened a new office in Saudi Arabia as part of its $35mn investment in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Located at Al Annod Tower on King Fahd Road in Riyadh, the new office adds to Xylem’s other recently opened facilities in the region including a manufacturing plant and rental and services business in Dubai, as well as an office in Doha, Qatar. Vincent Chirouze, regional director, Xylem Middle East and Africa (MEA), said: “The opening of our Saudi Arabia

office is an important milestone for our regional investment and supports our longterm strategy of providing sustainable water technology solutions to help solve the region’s water challenges. The new office enables us to be closer to our customers and develop smarter, bespoke solutions that fit their unique needs, which also allows us to increase our capabilities. “The new Saudi Arabia office extends our legacy of providing the same high-quality service and products our partners and customers have come to expect from Xylem.”

Kansai Paint set to expand in the GCC Kansai Paint is aiming to open up to 50 new distribution centres in the coming year across the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar as it bids to tap into the $3.6bn coatings industry in the region. With over 1,000 employees in the Middle East, key markets in the GCC for Kansai Paint are KSA, which accounts for 35 percent of its business in the region, followed by the UAE (23 percent), with the primary business segments being architecture coatings (68 percent) and protective coatings (34 percent).

“Kansai Paint is seeking to build its position in key strategic markets in the years to come, which includes the MENA & CIS markets,” said Hiroshi Ishino, President and Representative Director, Kansai Paint. “We are committed to investing what is needed in order to achieve that ambition. “The MENA & CIS region has tremendous potential, and with our strong presence already in the market, we will work hard to contribute to society by providing prod-

ucts and services that satisfy the high expectations of our customers in the region.” Ishino, who has been leading Kansai Paint since 2013, was in Dubai for the company’s annual sales meeting. His visit follows the launch of its first design centre in Jeddah. In the UAE, Kansai Paint has also refurbished its Umm Suqeim Design Centre and has set up a new paint store in Al Ain.

Water solutions

Wilo pushes water solutions in Kuwait Wilo Middle East, in cooperation with its local distributor in Kuwait Al Madadd Trading & Contracting Co., organised an intensive week of in-house seminars last month as part of its plans to offer water solutions to key governmental entities in the country. The German company organized four seminars that covered four governmental entities in Kuwait namely: the Ministry of Public Works; the Ministry of Water and Electricity; the Public Authority

for Housing Welfare; and the Ministry of Defense – Military projects engineering. “Our long term relationship with a leading local distributor such as Al Madadd in Kuwait, and the alignment of the visions of both the companies were the cornerstone of our endeavors to offer Wilo’s high-tech solutions to govern-

mental authorities in Kuwait,” said Morcel Burjas, Senior Area Manager, Wilo Middle East. “This is also a result of the highly efficient sales and aftersales services of our partner Al Madadd throughout the history of our cooperation.” He added: “We have set an ambitious business development strategy that aims to

cover all segments of the Kuwaiti market. Our efforts will not be limited to the governmental sector, as we look forward to provide all end users from both government and private sectors with Wilo’s latest and state-of-the-art German technologies that ensure providing the best-in-class clean water and waste water services. With the high end solutions we provide, we are confident that we will be able to implement our strategy within a short time span.”

construction business news me // June 2017 //


// Save the date

Save the date Mark your calendar





Cityscape Global Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, UAE Firmly established as the largest and the most influential real estate exhibition in the Middle East, Cityscape Global provides real estate businesses with a once-a-year opportunity to network with leading institutional investors, real estate developers, government authorities, private and more. BICES China China International Exhibition Center Shunyi New Hall, Beijing Beijing International Construction Machinery Exhibition & Seminar (BICES 2017) is the leading exhibition in the fields of construction machinery, building material machinery, mining machinery and commercial vehicles. The BICES show has been going strong for 20 years and is held every 2 years.





The Big 5 Outdoor Design & Build Show




Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, UAE

The Big 5 Outdoor Design & Build Show is an established trade show for professionals specialising in urban development and infrastructure. The exhibition will focus on urban and green open spaces, including parks, healthcare and educational establishments, transportation facilities and major residential projects.

// construction business news me // June 2017



The Big 5 Kuwait 2017 Kuwait International Fairground Bringing together over 5,000 construction professionals, the Big 5 Kuwait is the biggest building and construction event in the region. The event creates the perfect environment for manufacturers and distributors of construction goods & services to showcase their products, network and do business with Kuwait’s biggest buyers in a professional environment. UK Construction Week 2017 Birmingham NEC UK Construction Week is the UK's largest construction trade event. Taking place at the Birmingham NEC from 10 – 12 October 2017 the event unites over 650 exhibitors with an audience of over 30,000 trade visitors. The Big 5 Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, UAE The Big 5 in Dubai in 2016 was the largest edition to date which, attracting 78,579 participants from across the globe, a 6.8 percent increase year on year. The Big 5 attracted more of the right key buyers than ever before, meaning more opportunities to promote your brand and sell construction products.

2017 10–12 OCTOBER








// Editor's pick

Construction outlook improves despite cuts MEED: Private sector will be a key driver of opportunity in 2017


he GCC construction market will continue to be challenging in 2017 due to ongoing uncertainty surrounding government spending, but the outlook is brightening, according to Middle East business intelligence service MEED. The region still offers significant opportunities for construction companies despite the slowdown in project spending, MEED says in its Outlook for GCC Construction 2017. However the report warns that a fall in the volume of new opportunities coupled with increased uncertainty about project timelines will see the construction market further hardening in response to increased competition. The report says that the region’s strongest markets over the past 12 months were Dubai, Kuwait and Bahrain, which saw its second-best year for awards since 2007, thanks to the financial support of its GCC partners through the Gulf Development Fund. Approval of the main contract for the expansion of Kuwait airport took that market to an all-time high of $12.2bn of project contract awards in 2016, while the start of work towards Expo 2020 in Dubai enabled the UAE also to record an increase in awards in 2016. Dubai recorded the lion’s share of the project activity in the UAE in 2016, accounting for 72 percent of all construction and transport deals in the country, while project spending fell sharply in Abu Dhabi. Elsewhere in the region however, the fall in oil prices since mid2014 has had a profound impact on the construction market in the GCC. With government revenues halved, ministries and other client bodies have had strict limitations imposed on capital spending. This has resulted in project delays and payment arears, while construction and transport con70

There is no doubt that the worst is behind us for the region’s construction market” tract awards have dropped in the GCC for the past three years. The worst performing countries were Saudi Arabia, which saw a 62 percent drop in contract awards, followed by Qatar and Oman. Delays in payments from government clients were a huge problem in Saudi Arabia, Oman and the UAE, affecting the cash flow of contractors and forcing thousands of layoffs. The recovery in oil prices in 2016 has eased some of the pressure on government finances, while the increased pace in the roll out of economic reforms will see an improvement in confidence as well as an increase in new forms of project model, such as public private partnerships (PPP).

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All GCC governments want to increase private sector investment to ease the burden of capital spending on the treasury and this will create new opportunities in the year ahead. Governments have been taking important steps to develop new revenue streams as well as tapping debt markets, which will help clear up payment arrears. Saudi Arabia says it plans to double infrastructure and transport spending this year. Its Vision 2030 programme provides a long-term vision for economic development while the National Transformation Programme has set economic strategy up to 2020 and the coming three years will be all about implementation. But, according to the Outlook for GCC Construction 2017, the kingdom must first establish project management offices which could delay any recovery. Considerable risks remain Capital spending will remain constrained and the success of PPP has been limited in the past, so there will be many new challenges to address, the report says. “There is no doubt that the worst is behind us for the region’s construction market,” says MEED editorial director Richard Thompson. “The sharp cuts to spending in 2015 and 2016 across the region, but particularly in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Abu Dhabi has been very painful for the GCC construction industry. But the recovery in oil prices and the implementation of reforms means that we will see things improving throughout 2017.” “Contractors should still be prepared for a challenging year however,” says Thompson. “The reform programme will take time to kick in and while we can expect to see key projects moving forward this year, there is still considerable uncertainty about delivery timelines.”





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