KUWAIT CITY, April 17: United Real Estate Company (URC), one of the leading real estate developers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), has announced the holding of its General Assembly Meeting for the fiscal year ending Dec 31, 2016.
Tariq Mohammed AbdulSalam, Chairman of URC, discussed highlights from the annual report for the year ended Dec 31, 2016 which provided an overview of the company’s major achievements over the past year. The report demonstrated the company’s strong financial and operational performance in 2016, despite economic and political challenges in the MENA region, where most of URC’s investments are located.
Despite these challenges, the company was able to maintain its strong performance, recording a significant growth in revenues. Total revenues during increased by 17% to KD 71 million, compared to KD 61 million last year, and net profit rose by 2% to KD 8.7 million, compared with KD 8.5 million in 2015.
Furthermore, the General Assembly Meeting approved the Board of Director’s recommendation to distribute cash dividends of 5 fils per share to the shareholders of URC.
AbdulSalam said, “URC’s ability to deliver consistently positive financial outcomes is a reflection of the success of our business strategy, which seeks to enhance and diversify the company’s sources of income and restructuring the company’s investment priorities to achieve a steady and consistent rate of return, taking into consideration various risk factors. In 2016, URC’s management focused on developing its relationships with financial and investment institutions, in line with the company’s expansion plans in the coming years. Additionally, the company’s management evaluated various financing alternatives to mitigate risks and further expand sources of financing, as well as supporting its strategic partnerships.”
In regards to URC’s projects AbdulSalam added that the Company achieved several project milestones to include the opening of Abdali Mall in the Kingdom of Jordan, which is the first mall of its kind in the region and is a new standard in shopping and entertainment experiences. It is also one of the largest shopping malls in the Kingdom. Furthermore, a new project was inaugurated in New Cairo, Egypt, spanning over 108,000 square meters, and will include residential apartments and a commercial and office complex.
In addition, the URC has a significant investment in the Kingdom of Morocco, Assoufid, which covers an area of more than 2 million square meters in the city of Marrakech. The project includes a first-class golf course, a five-star hotel, and a residential component comprised of villas, high-end apartments in addition to other services and amenities. In 2016, the final master plan design was approved, as well as the signing of project management contracts and the beginning of infrastructure design works.
Furthermore, AbdulSalam mentioned that Board of Directors has taken serious and effective measures to ensure the company adheres to the highest level of corporate governance and internal control that is in-line with the nature of URC’s business as a leader in the real estate market. The same approach will continue throughout 2017 to achieve efficiency and accomplish the company’s objectives and implementation of URC’s strategic plans.
Ahmed Kasem, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of URC, said: “The strong growth in revenues and profits in 2016 and the company’s portfolio of assets demonstrates the company’s ability to execute and develop various projects.
Kasem added that the Board of Directors and the Executive Management are working to accelerate the growth of URC’s subsidiaries, which are specialized in the field of contracting, facilities management and project management, which demonstrated an increase in revenues of that sector by 118%, compared to 2015.”