Firas Al Msaddi, Chief Executive Officer of fäm Properties, one of the largest, most successful real estate firm in the UAE, and Executive Chairman of the fäm Group.
At the age of 25, he founded the agency in 2009, built in the midst of the global economic crisis, and was driven by his unfaltering belief in the sustainability and endurance of Dubai.
The company was created with a promise to its customers to operate with complete integrity and to uphold the highest ethical standards in the industry. The company ethos is that better values combined with better technology produces better results.
Today, fäm Properties employs more than 200 members of staff, with a 7,000 square foot Business Bay headquarters and operates an additional 5000 square foot of four other retail outlets. It exclusively manages and runs a real estate investment portfolio of over AED2 billion mainly in Dubai with a further AED300 million internationally.
On yearly basis, since 2012, fäm Properties has been recognized as the best top sales performing brokerage for all major mega master developers including but not limited to Dubai Holding, EMAAR, MERAAS and Meydan. And for two consecutive years 2017/18 & 2018/19 recognized by DLD as the highest transacting agency in Dubai.
Firas Al Msaddi moved to Dubai in December 2005 from his native Syria for his new job as a sales executive for Armani Jeans in Deira City Centre shopping mall. With limited English language proficiencies, he worked double shifts in order to learn and develop his skills as quickly as possible. Within 18 months, he set his sights on forging a career in the real estate industry, undertaking more than 50 job interviews.
His breakthrough came from a small boutique real estate agency in Dubai Marina mid-way through 2007 and he was quickly headhunted to another agency to assume a Sales Manager role by the end of the year; less than two years later he was running the office and studying for a Bachelor’s in Business Administration in Dubai.
He also manages an investment portfolio for ultra-high net worth individuals in the GCC, while other businesses that he created within the fäm Group are fäm Real Estate Development Advisory, fäm Interior Design, fäm Media 24/7 and fäm Living.
He has been called a serial entrepreneur and credits his vision and drive to his parents and wife, all of whom encouraged and inspired him, and his overriding belief is that the harder one works, the more one learns and the faster one progresses. An extreme-sports fan, he also loves to play chess and learn from the diverse range of people he meets from around the world.
Born in 1984, Firas is married with two young sons and twin girls. He lives with his family in Dubai.
Stefan is an award-winning property technology expert, advisor and investment manager. He is the CEO and owner of Evarei – an asset management advisory firm in the UAE, with expertise spanning 25-years in private equity, investment advisory and management consulting, specializing in hospitality, leisure, real estate and, most recently, applications of digitalization, tokenization and blockchain within these sectors. During his career, Stefan has managed direct investment in, or advised on, more than 500 projects in the real estate, hospitality and leisure sector space totaling over US$ 25 billion.
Founder and CEO Arms &McGregor International Group® including Arms &McGregor Leisure, Vacations, Investments and Realty®. Aside of running Arms &McGregor International Realty® I am also the Founder of BBP a specialist media agency and have cofounded other Real estate brokerages similar to Morgan’s International Realty and Clemson porter Properties.
A published author with 3 books and more than 200 articles on the subjects of Real estate, Investments, Sales, and life coaching.
Abdullah Al Ajaji is the founder and Managing Director of Driven Properties, a fast expanding property brokerage, investment, management, and consultancy company operating in the Middle East.
Abdullah is a Saudi National and prior to launching Driven Properties, he has gained extensive experience across various corporate and investment functions with prominent organizations in Saudi Arabia. Abdullah started his professional career with Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest oil company, as an Associate in the company’s Corporate Planning Department. Subsequently, he was also associated with the company’s Corporate Finance & Asset Management division as a Senior Associate.
Abdullah Alajaji established Driven Properties in 2012. In just 5 years, Driven Properties grew to become one of the fastest leading property brokerages in the UAE. It was even recognized by well-known property portals and major developers, as one of the top 3 agencies in the UAE, for consecutive years. Furthermore, Abdullah has successfully launched branches in the UAE, and international offices like in Saudi Arabia, and in Beijing, China.
Abdullah started unique initiatives like a proptech incubation service named Unbox Inc. and monthly panel discussions with some of the largest industry names in the business with The Real Talk. Furthermore, Abdullah Alajaji also manages several subsidiaries like Driven Holiday Homes, Driven Interiors, and, ROC Citizenship.
Stephan Degenhart is an Associate Partner of Drees & Sommer and the Managing Director of the Middle East office where he oversees a large team of professionals. Stephan has been working with Drees & Sommer since 2000 and has extensive experience in the field of real estate development consulting and project management. Stephan holds a degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Applied Sciences Munich and is currently leading the strategic growth of the Drees & Sommer in the Middle East, fortifying the company’s place in the region.
John is responsible for developing, managing and delivering business strategy, to maximise Shareholder value and return-on-investment. Prior to his appointment as Managing Director, John was responsible for the operations of the Asteco Property Management Department across the region.
With the experience of providing strategic property advice to Owners and Occupiers, he has a unique and detailed understanding of the operation, maintenance and planning involved in managing Clients’ portfolios with the goal of assisting them to achieve their Real Estate objectives.
Hashim Saeed is responsible for setting up the IT strategy and roadmap as well as managing the overall IT operations across the AZIZI Group. Hashim has joined AZIZI Developments in 2017 and has led the IT Service Transformation projects for AZIZI, moving them away from the traditional on premise legacy environment to a Cloud based. He has also effectively managed and delivered solutions related to automation and digitalization that improved efficiency and productivity, reduced cost and human intervention, enforced paperless and increased customer engagement. Hashim holds an MSc in Strategy Business and Information Technology and his extensive experience in the IT infrastructure and project management field has made an instant impact.
Over 23 years of extensive technical and business expertise, and knowledge to lead and align strategic objectives and operations of a Private/Government/Semi Government entity, Faisal has continuously been successfully leading the digital transformation journey across large business group in the region for his contributions towards digital introduction of the new technologies in the sector. He was awarded with 2018 CIO 100 Award and Best Use of Technology in the Real Estate Sector 2018.
Binoo Joseph is the Head of Information Technology at Emaar PJSC. He heads the Group technology function and runs multiple technology transformation initiatives across Emaar Properties, Malls, Hospitality, Entertainment and International.
In previous roles he led large scale retail and enterprise technology transformation programs in China, Central Europe, UK and Singapore. Prior to moving to Dubai he headed technology for an online venture company in Singapore.
He is an experienced change leader and has extensive experience in omnichannel retail, e-commerce, marketplaces and emerging tech.
With over 16+ years’ experience in the technology industry he will share his ideas and experience on next generation Datacenters and how CIOs can plan for the future.
Gurjit has been in the UAE for over a decade and is at present the Senior Vice President – Real Estate with the Dubai World Trade Centre, overseeing its multi asset city centre redevelopment programme as well as the development of its assets at the fringe of the Dubai Expo 2020. Previously he was the Chief Operating Officer of Sorouh Real Estate PJSC and the Chief Development Officer of Aldar Properties PJSC, in Abu Dhabi. Gurjit also spent many years as the Group Director – Real Estate with the Sentosa Development Corporation, planning and developing the Sentosa Island resort, the IR [Integrated Resort] and the Sentosa Cove waterfront development in Singapore and prior to that with Sime Darby Ltd and Jones Lang Wootton in Malaysia. Gurjit received his education at the University of Cambridge, and has authored numerous publications on real estate development and management.
A high impact, qualified and results focused analytical professional with solid track record of orchestrating growth and leading strategic initiatives in Business Intelligence & Analytics, Big Data and Data Warehousing for globally reputed companies.
Possess multi-geography experience having led assignments across Middle East, United States, and India.
I am a Senior Real Estate Sales and Marketing Executive with over 20 years of experience, 12 years of Regional Experience, held several Senior Roles with Major Developers such as Omniyat, Tameer and Currently Senior Director with Nshama, previous to the Region was a Director with Lend Lease Australia for over 8 years, also a Master Developer, one of the largest in the Australasia region, I have watched the Free Hold market in the UAE from being a raw market with hardly any regulations, to become one of the most regulated and Maturing markets in the world.
Richard is the Managing Director of Betterhomes, the UAEs largest real estate brokerage.
Having graduated from university with a degree in Law, Richard began his career in real estate at the London estate agency Foxtons. He over 15 years’ experience in real estate spanning residential and commercial sales and leasing, property management, financial services and acquisitions.
Richard moved to Dubai in October 2017 to join Betterhomes as Director of Brokerage and assumed the position of MD in January this year. Betterhomes has long championed the marriage of technology with exceptional service and continues to be an innovative leader in the Dubai property market.
Mubariki Hussain is the Director of IT for Bloom Holding group of companies which include businesses in the Property, Hospitality, Education, Facilities Management, Landscape sectors. He is a highly versatile, award-winning IT Leader and CIO who has successfully positioned IT at the forefront of business transformation, with a deep understanding of how to combine challenging business and technical requirements. His technical skills in digital transformation, ERP, infrastructure, service delivery, data and applications are combined with a real passion for developing others and sharing my knowledge.
Fahad Mohamed is the Director of Facilities Management of Deyaar Owners Association Management. In this capacity, Fahad provides both operational and technical support to the organization on matters relating to Asset/ Facilities Operation & Management.
Fahad holds a Master’s Degree in Facilities Management and a Bachelors in Electrical and Electronics Engineering with Honors. He is a certified internal auditor for ISO 9001, 14001, 45001 and has completed certification in IOSH Managing Safety, multiple Association Management Courses under RERA, Certified MEFMA Trainer and holds certified member status at Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management.
He has over thirteen years’ experience in both public and private sectors in the UAE, and has a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of various aspects such as operations, procurement, technical services, asset and property management.
Safdar Zaman, a recognized ICT leader with more than 18 years’ experience in IT Processes, IT Security, Project Management, Big Data and IT Governance. Safdar Zaman is currently the Head of IT Strategy and Governance in Nakheel PJSC, a leader in developing iconic innovative landmark projects in Dubai where he successfully drafted and executed a turnaround strategy to transform IT from predominantly service delivery to a strategic business enabler.
Safdar started his career in Banking Software Company and has served different technical and managerial positions and advanced to the position of IT Strategy and Governance Head. During his 18 years career he participated in numerous challenging initiatives across cloud computing, Big Data, Virtualizations, Security, ERP, Business Processes Enhancements (Lean Six Sigma) and business transformations. He has successfully managed several innovative and challenging projects across Oil and Gas, Real Estate, Hospitality and services sectors.
Safdar holds in addition to PGMP, PMP, ITIL, COBIT, CISA, CISM, CGEIT, CISSP, ISO27001, ISO2000, CISSP, CEH certificates and a bachelor degree in Electrical Engineering.
Amol is the Head of Payments and Cash Management at Commercial Bank of Dubai.
As Head of Payments and Cash Management, Amol is responsible for Wholesale Payments, Cash and Liquidity Management solutions. Furthermore, he also heads E-commerce and Physical Acquiring business for GREs, Corporates, Commercial and Financial Institutions. Under his leadership, Commercial Bank of Dubai has developed several capabilities and many new to the country to facilitate and optimize corporate and institutional clients' treasury and payments. In this role, Amol carries full P&L responsibility and accountability for end-to-end business, and product related governance and regulatory responsibilities.
With nearly 22 years of professional experience in managing relationship building functions, including over 14 years in delivering significant growth in payments, cash and liquidity management across diverse customer segments. Amol having held several positions across South Asia and the Middle East has been instrumental in the strategic development and growth of the bank's cash management proposition.
Under Amol’s leadership, Commercial Bank of Dubai has won several awards including: “Best Cash Management Bank” in 2017 and 2018 from Banker Middle East, “Best Online Cash Management” in 2018 from Global Finance World’s Best Digital Bank Awards and “Excellence in Payments” from Finnovex Middle East Awards 2019. He was the driving force behind publishing a Treasury and Cash Management Best Practice Handbook, first in the country.
Carine Neill is a seasoned marketing, communications and sales professional who heads the Marketing and Sales departments at real estate developer IMKAN. She also oversees corporate communications on a global level for the group. As a member of the IMKAN executive team, Carine works closely with the CEO and fellow department heads to drive the growth of IMKAN’s organizational identity based on the vision and mission of the company. On a technical level, she uses her experienced skillset to provide a strategic lens across all departments, facilitating the communication and seamless delivery of IMKAN’s core purpose to all stakeholders.
After spending over 16 years in real estate, hospitality, F&B and media sectors, Carine carries an extensive management & consultancy level background in building world-class brands across multiple industries. As a successful leader in previous roles, she curated and spearheaded efficient integrated strategies to help elevate brands and sales under high-profile companies such as Emaar, MBC, Meydan Sobha, Meraas, Kerzner and KIPCO.
Her notable accomplishments are fully driven by her passion for developing iconic destinations that stand out - not only in the region but across the globe.
Carine holds an MBA in Strategic Management from HEC Montreal and a BA in Economics from The American University of Beirut. She is an active alumnus of both universities and occasionally mentors students from these and other institutions.
Noreen Nasralla is a senior level real estate marketing professional with over 19 years of experience. She has worked with some of the biggest names in Dubai’s real estate industry across both the government and private sector and is among a handful of women holding a senior position in what is traditionally a male-dominated industry.
With experience stretching from JAFZA to Nakheel and Dubai Properties Group (DPG), Noreen is presently leading the marketing functions at Al-Futtaim Real Estate, where she drives the leadership’s vision and overall development plans and plays the principal role in realizing the objectives of the management.
Noreen has extensive marketing, communication, and brand experience encompassing brand management and strategic planning – both traditional and digital. Some of her biggest achievements include marketing a portfolio of over AED 16 billion, ranging from built to sell, lease, retail, commercial and destination brands while at DPG. She was also the driving force to set up the marketing functions and led a team of 26 associates that shaped the identity of the company.
Currently, she is spearheading the vision and execution of Dubai Festival City’s new digital identity and innovative real estate solutions such as crowdfunding. A passionate believer in all things tech – Noreen is also leading the Group’s initiative relating to advanced analytics and predictive modeling.
Noreen is also the driving force behind the launch of the official Dubai Festival City website. She is also responsible for the Festival City brand and its affiliation to the Al-Futtaim Group.
Prior to taking over the reins at Al-Futtaim, Noreen was instrumental in leading Dubai Properties into its digital platform. She introduced for the first time by a real estate developer the use of virtual reality and Google Glass during Cityscape to showcase the developer's off-plan project – 1/JBR. The innovative marketing exercise saw over 2,000 leads and the use of VR and Google Glass also helped increase footfall to the Dubai Properties stand and attracted wide interest for its projects.
Passionate about real estate, Noreen has allowed it to fuel her career, believing that learning is a continuous process. She makes sure she attends the latest workshops and conferences in order to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and innovations in the field, allowing her to grow professionally and personally.
Noreen believes in leading from the front and in inspiring her team to go above and beyond. Being the first one in the office every day she sets an example for her team and ensures her team stays motivated and KPIs are met, by leading from the front and challenging her team to always think out of the box. She strives to expand her scope and experience continuously and is thus currently leading strategic marketing, CRM, and Customer Experience.
Sophia Syed is the Group Marketing Manager for Binghatti Holdings, she currently spearheads the group divisions to drive the growth of Binghatti’s vision and missions forward using her experienced skillset to provide a strategic lens across all departments, facilitating the communication and seamless delivery of Binghatti’s core purpose to all stakeholders. A highly motivated marketing professional raised and born in the UK, she has built a reputable network of connections globally.
A highly motivated, articulate and proficient business professional, with over 13 years of extensive International Luxury Residential & Commercial Real Estate experience; across both the Sales & Leasing property sectors with a proven record of success in developing essential and productive relations providing; Professional advice and support to Vendors & clients throughout the prime residential markets of prime central London & Dubai.
Born & Raised in London UK, but currently Based in Dubai since 2006, Khalid Idrissi has built up an elite VIP client base through many high profile off market Sales & Purchases; of which consequently has unrivalled knowledge and experience of the Super-Prime sector.
*Speakers to be confirmed
Expotrade Middle East FZ-LLC
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