Real Estate Icons
Tue 28 Aug 2018 09:20 PM
Walid El Hindi

Company: IMKAN Properties

Designation: CEO

Walid El Hindi has more than 20 years of professional experience in the real estate development sector. As the chief executive officer of IMKAN Properties, he is responsible for the global real estate portfolio for the holding company, Abu Dhabi Capital Group. The current portfolio spans four continents and more than AED100bn in value.

In addition, El Hindi holds the position of chief executive officer for Capital Group Properties in Egypt, where he is responsible for the landmark Alburouj project, a fully mixed-use development with 25,000 residential units, Smart Village East Office park, and a major cultural hub. El Hindi is a board member on HHRM, a leading hospitality business with a global hotel portfolio.

Prior to joining the group, El Hindi served as the chief development officer for Emaar in Egypt, where he managed an investment portfolio of $10bn. His previous experience included working for AECOM, and Elness Swenson Graham Architects. As a member of the Executive Committee of the Minneapolis Planning Commission Board, he served the city to establish its comprehensive plan.

The real estate industry needs to shift its way of thinking in respect to how the new generation wants to live”

Between 2002 and 2008, El Hindi taught architecture as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Minnesota, where he graduated with a bachelors in architecture.

IMKAN, a wholly owned subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Capital Group (ADCG), is an Abu Dhabi-based real estate developer with a portfolio of 26 projects spanning four continents and covering 30 million sqm in various development stages. The company’s proposition is built around a unique research platform that uncovers the unique social behaviours and habits of specific market segments – from millennials to discerning high-net-worth individuals – to formulate tailored user profiles. This research-led approach enables the company to shape communities that are in tune with the mindset of each profile, thereby adding value for its stakeholders.

“When we started, we thought we have to think of a different approach to real estate and one of the things that was very much the basis of IMKAN was the idea of research,” El Hindi says of this platform.

“We wanted to push the boundary of research and to really explore real estate in all of our lives’ experiences. For instance, our research platform looks into everything from law, design, tech, psychology to fashion and food. We would look into things that relate, from a design standpoint, to the latest technologies in the construction industry in controlling micro climates, for example.”

The developer’s key projects include two developments in Makers District – The-Artery, a multi-use building that integrates a makers’ space with a parking garage, and Pixel, the company’s first mixed-use destination – as well as Nudra, a luxury beachside villa community, and Sheikha Fatima Park, an open-air project that seeks to enhance community interaction. In addition, the company has big announcements in the pipeline for 2018.

The 18-hectare Makers District is located on Reem Island overlooking the water and directly opposite Saadiyat Island, home to the cultural district, housing the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Its location creates a dynamic and multi-layered experience which draws from its surrounding, both geographically and culturally. The creatively designed neighbourhood is poised to become the go-to destination for the UAE’s culture enthusiasts. Land reclamation was completed in May and piling work has already commenced.

Nudra, or “rare” in Arabic, is a luxury lifestyle destination offering 37 high-end beach side residential villas, which are now taking shape in the Cultural District on Saadiyat Island and due to be handed over in Q2 2019.

Around the region, El Hindi is also overseeing the Alburouj project in East Cairo, spanning over five million sqm. Currently, more than 1,200 residential units are under construction, with the first handovers taking place in Q2 2019. In Morocco, the Carmine development is offering bespoke riad-style homes for contemporary living in Marrakech, while they are also developing a mixed-use project in the capital, Rabat.