Stars of 2018
Sat 22 Dec 2018 10:25 PM
Rizwan Sajan

Industry: Building and construction

Company: Danube Group

Designation: Founder and chairman

He is called the man with the ‘Midas Touch’ for having built his company Danube Group into the undisputed market leader for building materials in the GCC, with a recorded turnover of $1.3bn in 2017. It distributes over 10,000 products and has expanded to customer-facing retail stores in the UAE, Bahrain, Oman and India. It also has three sourcing centres in China. Sajan, who today has an estimated net worth of $2.5bn, transformed the company from a one-employee shop into a global operation of over 3,300 people based in over 50 locations in nine countries.

I say with confidence and pride that almost every home in Dubai has me or my company Danube in different ways

Under his leadership, the firm’s real estate subsidiary Danube Properties built a portfolio of luxury developments including Dreamz by Danube and Glitz Residences. Its ongoing projects in Dubai include the $150m Lawnz development, which sold out within five weeks of its launch, as well as the $81m Jewelz project which sold out within two months of its market debut. In March 2018, the billionaire forayed into publishing, re-launching the Filmfare Middle East magazine, which focuses on films, fashion, lifestyle and in-depth exclusive interviews of top industry figures. He also started the Danube Welfare Centre in 2012 which offer a number of free training courses to help unskilled workers improve their language skills.