Dubai-based property developer Sobha plans to hire around 2,000 people in Dubai within the next year as it begins developing mega-project Mohammed Bin Rashid City – District One in the emirate.
The Dhs25 billion mixed-use project, being developed by MeydanSobha, a joint venture between Meydan and Sobha, will include the world’s largest man-made lagoon and luxurious residential units.
“This is a very exclusive development in terms of location,” PNC Menon, founder and chairman of Sobha Group told Gulf Business on the sidelines of Cityscape. “You can’t dream of a low-density development like this in the heart of any big city. Only 35 per cent of the development will used for habitation, with the balance 65 per cent comprising parks, greenery, water-bodies and beautiful roads,” he said.
“So we have a lot of activity coming up and we will be hiring more people for the next one year – we are recruiting about 2,000 people in Dubai,” he added.
The first phase of the development is slated for completion in June 2016 and will offer 332 villas. Showcase villas have been built over the last five months and open to public this week.
“We have seen a lot of interest from investors – mainly from the Gulf, the Middle East, India and Pakistan,” said Menon. But most are end-users, he added.
“This is not a speculative product. It’s meant for end-users. It’s meant for people to invest and come live in it and use it. However, if someone wants to sell after three to five years, I expect that you will get a reasonable return,” Menon explained.
In terms of financing the project, Sobha said that they will use internal finances and tie-up with banks.
“We have a reasonably good balance sheet and we should be able to get finance,” he stated.
Menon is also optimistic about Dubai’s entire property market, although he expects prices to stabilise at current standards.
“Post-2008, property prices crashed between 50 to 60 per cent. So it’s only a partial recovery that’s happened now. The current prices are reasonable, and I don’t expect them to go up any further.
“We are in a very stable and attractive market,” he said.