x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Deyaar to enter low cost housing, retirement market

Deyaar plans to diversify its portfolio into low-cost housing and retirement villages, even as it reduces its overall holdings by half, its chief executive Mark Giebel says.

Deyaar plans to diversify its portfolio into low-cost housing and retirement villages, even as it reduces its overall holdings by half, its chief executive Mark Giebel says. "One third of our portfolio will be low-cost housing in emerging countries, one third will be problem-solving real estate including retirement homes," Mr Giebel said. He said retired US and European citizens who had retired sought out sunny regions in which to spend the winter months.

"If you build a retirement home in Dubai, it does not mean it has to be for Emiratis or for Middle Eastern people," he said. "We have to set up retirement homes all around the world. This is a long-term sustainability model, a real opportunity." Mr Giebel said that Deyaar would announce a detailed strategy for low-cost housing by the end of the year. "The last couple of years we were way too busy to look at anything else than mid and high income properties, Mr Giebel said. "We are now looking at emerging markets including Libya, Lebanon, Turkey and Egypt."

Half of Deyaar's projects are being moved out of the portfolio, Mr Giebel said. Deyaar's total portfolio will be cut in half, from Dh20bn to Dh10bn, he added. ngillet@thenational.ae