Emaar Properties profit on track for $1 billion

Profit at Emaar Properties, Dubai’s premier developer, is forecast to cross the US$1 billion threshold in the current year.

Mohamed Alabbar, the chairman, told shareholders at the annual meeting in Dubai that net profits for 2015 would be Dh3.69bn, a 12 per cent rise over 2014.

Some analysts had expected the meeting to be an occasion for shareholders to express their disquiet about the share price performance and Mr Alabbar’s role in other property ventures, but there was no controversy and no unexpected questions from the floor at the meeting.

Motions to approve the 2014 accounts, to reappoint the accountants Ernst & Young, and to reappoint directors were all approved, as expected and unopposed.

Mr Alabbar was reappointed a director along with nine others, putting a final end to speculation that he might stand down as chairman.

Even before the meeting began, there was a sense that it would be a routine gathering, and that rumours of shareholder unease has been overdone in recent weeks.

“There’s been media talk of unhappy shareholders, but I challenge you to find one here today,” said one investor who declined to give his name.

Another, a representative of a big family office in the region, said that he had been a long-term holder in Emaar and would continue to hold the shares. “The chairman deserves a big bonus, not to resign,” he said.

Mr Alabbar told the meeting that Emaar had big plans in the Dubai property market, despite static or falling property prices.

He highlighted plans for joint ventures in hotel and residential development in the emirate, in partnership with government owned groups Dubai Holding and Meraas.

Mr Alabbar recently announced that Emaar had a land bank of 235 million square metres, “enough to develop for decades to come”.


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