x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Drake & Scull wins contract to build towers in Jeddah

Drake & Scull said on Tuesday it had won a contract worth 1.73 billion Saudi riyals to build a twin-tower residential and commercial development in Jeddah.

The Dubai contractor Drake & Scull has been awarded a 1.725 billion Saudi riyals (Dh1.689bn) contract by the Saudi developer Lamar Investment and Real Estate Development to build one of the tallest buildings in Saudi Arabia.

The long-delayed Lamar Towers project in Jeddah will comprise twin towers stretching 57 and 49 storeys above the Jeddah Corniche. Drake & Scull Saudi Arabia will oversee and undertake all construction on the project as well as complete the mechanical, electrical and plumbing work in which the company specialises, Drake & Scull said yesterday.

The project is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2015.

Drake & Scull is the third contractor to have been awarded the construction contract in the tower's difficult history and the second development company charged with delivering it.

The project was initially launched in 2007, with Arabian Construction Company named as contractor in October 2008.

A second Dh1.9bn contract was then re-awarded to Dubai-based Arabtec in June 2009, but work was halted soon afterwards with little more than the foundations completed.

The initial project was masterminded by Cayan Investment and Development, the developer behind Dubai Marina towers such as the twisting Infinity Tower.

In a statement to the Dubai bourse yesterday Drake & Scull said that the 415,500 square metre scheme had been "restructured and refinanced" this year with investments from new "regional and international investors", while a new development company was "assigned to manage the project".

"The Lamar Towers Project is a very important vote of confidence in the technical capabilities and specialised expertise of Drake & Scull International in KSA," said Khaldoun Tabari, the chief executive of Drake & Scull International. "The scope of work required for this project highlights DSI's flexibility in managing all types of construction challenges and requirements."

This month Drake & Scull reported that net profits for the first quarter of the year rose 47 per cent on the back of increased orders from Saudi Arabia, which has become one of the contractor's key markets.