ROSHN CEO David Grover on transforming Saudi's housing sector
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ROSHN CEO David Grover on transforming Saudi’s housing sector

ROSHN CEO David Grover on transforming Saudi’s housing sector

The group GCEO tells us that ROSHN is a catalyst for economic growth and diversification in addition to raising homeownership rates in the country

Kudakwashe Muzoriwa
ROSHN’s group CEO on transforming Saudi living

“Saudi Arabia is a young, ambitious and growing nation. With the population projected to reach 50 million by 2030, and over 60 per cent under 30, part of HRH Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud’s Vision 2030 is to ensure there is quality housing for the kingdom’s people.”

David Grover, the CEO of ROSHN Group explains while emphasising that this demand provides an opportunity for all big developers in real estate, especially those focusing on community projects.

Grover leads Saudi Arabia’s leading real estate firm, which is the main contributor to Vision 2030’s goal of 70 per cent homeownership by the end of the decade.

With a career spanning over four decades in the real estate industry, Grover brings invaluable global expertise to ROSHN.

He previously served as board director at Mace Group in the UK. During his 25-year tenure at the startup, he played an instrumental role in its growth into a company with a turnover of over $2.5bn and a workforce of 6,500 employees by the time he left in 2020.

Under his guidance, ROSHN is delivering on its mandate to increase homeownership in Saudi Arabia, improve living standards and reinvent communities of the future, while staying committed to preserving the country’s rich cultural heritage.

“At ROSHN, we’re proud to have taken the lead as the first Saudi giga-project to deliver to customers. But we’re not resting, we’ve sold thousands more homes and still have many more transformative projects to announce to date,” says Grover.

ROSHN kicked off sales for the third phase of its SEDRA community in Riyadh and its second integrated community in Riyadh – WAREFA – last October.

“WAREFA builds on the success of SEDRA, our flagship community. With SEDRA 30 times oversubscribed, WAREFA offers another opportunity for buyers to secure their dream home in ROSHN’s new way of living with over 2,300 residential units to house around 13,000 people at full completion,” adds Grover.

With plans to create jobs and contribute to Saudi Arabia’s GDP by 2030, the group is a catalyst for economic growth and diversification in addition to raising homeownership rates in the country.

More than three years since ROSHN’s formation, Grover believes partnerships have been central to the developer’s success, and its reputation for excellence and reliability.

The group awarded Chinese and Saudi firms contracts valued at SAR9bn last September, including a SAR7.7bn construction contract to China Harbour Engineering Company.

It also signed 11 contracts with six private sector real estate developers valued at around SAR2.2bn in 2022.

“We need robust, diversified, and sustainable supply chains and our strategic commercial partnerships are key to this. By working with local suppliers, we not only strengthen our supply chains, we empower local content and boost the national economy – all in line with our Vision 2030 commitments,” explains Grover.

“We choose partners who can help us deliver on our commitments to Vision 2030 and who share our values. Aligning on sustainability, responsibility, empowerment, and safety, and by embracing innovation and facing the future together strengthens these partnerships, enhances delivery, and ensures positive long-term results for customers, community, and the kingdom.”

Growth in Saudi Arabia’s property and construction sector is being driven by ongoing efforts to diversify the economy, and notable projects include ROSHN’s SEDRA and WAREFA in Riyadh, ALFULWA in the Eastern Province and ALAROUS and MARAFY in Jeddah.

With a mandate to build more than 200 million square meters (sqm) of integrated neighbourhoods nationwide, ROSHN is a champion of Saudi Arabia’s Housing Program, PIF Program and Quality of Life Program, all under the auspices of the kingdom’s Vision 2030.

Building sustainably

Saudi Arabia is moving towards a path of sustainability. The kingdom has set several sustainability-linked targets across different industries including real estate and construction.

ROSHN’s key principle of sustainability permeates every aspect of its development. “We are determined to be leaders in sustainable development.

Our sustainability strategy guides our work from planning, through construction, and on to operation, but we’re also enabling sustainable lifestyles for our communities by making it the easy choice for both residents and visitors,” says Grover.

The Riyadh-based firm has recently partnered with the Saudi Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Company (EVIQ) in January will enhance electric vehicle infrastructure to accelerate the adoption of these vehicles.

More recently, two international partnerships will see ROSHN explore localising manufacturing of Partanna’s CO2-absorbing concrete and Pure.Tech’s CO2-absorbing paint additives in the kingdom – boosting both environmental and economic sustainability.

ROSHN is also leveraging its giga-project size and scale to boost sustainability, community wellbeing, and quality of life beyond its projects across the whole kingdom through YUHYEEK, its corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme.

YUHYEEK’s initiatives range from tree planting initiatives to raising awareness of public health issues, sponsoring projects that enhance the kingdom’s artistic and cultural sectors and providing community support.

ROSHN is also contributing to the nation’s physical well-being and improving quality of life through its corporate sponsorship of sports and cultural events.

Towards Vision 2030

Strengthening the housing sector in Saudi Arabia and improving the access of Saudi families to housing that meets their needs is an integral part of the country’s Vision 2030.

“Vision 2030 has set an ambitious target of 70 per cent home ownership from a baseline of 50 per cent. By 2020, home ownership was already 60 per cent. Now, as ROSHN builds at unprecedented scale and speed across the kingdom, with five communities launched and more to come, we’re making a significant contribution to achieving that 70 per cent target,” Grover shares.

Vision 2030 states that “housing is the foundational asset that is capable of shaping and influencing the vibrancy of families, communities, and broader society.”

Since 2016, when the Saudis embarked on an ambitious plan to build mega projects and transform the economy, the value of property and infrastructure projects has crossed $1.25tn, with $250bn in awarded construction contracts.

“We see a positive future for the Saudi real estate sector, there’s strong growth predicted over the next decade, and we look forward to contributing to and benefitting from that growth,” adds Grover.

“As we look to this bright future, we at ROSHN will continue to form values-based partnerships to drive that growth, meet demand, and enable Vision 2030 as a future-facing leader of the sector.”

Grover says while the demand for homeownership in Saudi Arabia has surged over the years, ROSHN is well-positioned to facilitate the journey of ownership while providing housing solutions that meet the varying needs of citizens, while improving quality of life.

Read: Roshn unveils Marafy, to redefine urban living in Jeddah

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