Company: Damac Properties
Designation: Founder and Chairman
The founder of the Middle East’s largest wholly private sector property developer continues to push his company forward to new heights. Hussain Sajwani founded Damac Properties in 2002, one of the first movers to seek the opportunities provided by the Dubai government decree that allowed foreigners to own property in the emirate. As such, he helped orchestrate one of the world’s biggest ever real estate booms.
His restless energy and determination have made him one of the world’s richest Arabs, with an estimated net worth of $2.7bn. In 2014, Sajwani chose to list the company on the London Stock Exchange and by 2017 had become the Arab world’s fourth biggest public company, with its buildings dominating the skyline of Dubai and Emaar its only real competitor in terms of scale.
My dream is to have Damac towers in important gateway cities around the world”
He has gone on to orchestrate some of the boldest schemes in the country. Akoya Oxygen, for example, is a $6.5bn, 55-million sq ft community project, while Damac Hills will eventually house 10,000 units.
Sajwani’s entrepreneurial pursuits began in 1982 when he started a catering company after leaving a career the oil and gas industry. He says his key business lessons, though, were derived from his father, who ran a small trading shop in Deira where he would learn all about knowing what the customer wants and then delivering it at a competitive price.