x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Gerrard gets a flat for backing project

Steven Gerrard, captain of Liverpool Football Club, received a flat in exchange for endorsing the Azizi Crystal tower on Palm Jebel Ali.

Liverpool's Steven Gerrard has endorsed a Dubai development.
Liverpool's Steven Gerrard has endorsed a Dubai development.

DUBAI // Steven Gerrard, captain of Liverpool Football Club, received a flat in exchange for endorsing the Azizi Crystal tower on Palm Jebel Ali. Gerrard backed the project at a launch party in London's Dorchester Hotel on Tuesday night. Azizi Investments has claimed the launch a success, reporting sales of more than Dh150 million (US$40.8m).

Gerrard, from Merseyside, England, has played his entire career for Liverpool, scoring more than 100 goals and helping them to two FA Cup trophies and two League Cup trophies as well as the European Cup as winners of the UEFA Champions League. His association played a big part in attracting early investors to the Dubai project, which is expected to cost more than Dh367 million (US$100m), said Steve Nosrat, marketing director for Azizi Investments. Mr Nosrat said investors "jumped on to" units on the eighth level when the company announced that Gerrard, who wears the number 8 on his club's jersey, will sit down with designers to create special features for the floor. The developer confirmed Gerrard had been given the flat.

A Liverpool supporter in Dubai said he was more concerned about how the team was doing on the pitch. They lead the Premier League by one point after a goalless draw against West Ham at Anfield on Monday. Chris Green, a member of the Liverpool FC supporters' club in Dubai, also said he did not think much of the business move. "The fan side of me doesn't want to say anything bad but a normal person that sees the current property market, doesn't think it's a good idea," he said.

On Monday, Azizi Investments said its five projects at the Palm Jebel Ali would not be scaled back, as other developments have been in the global financial crisis. The concept design for Azizi Crystal has been approved, the company said. "We are going full force and committed to delivering all the projects that we announced," Mr Nosrat said. "There is a credit crunch across the world but that doesn't mean that money has disappeared.

"There are still investors with money and with the right opportunity? there's no reason why they wouldn't invest and this is the place to do it." mchung@thenational.ae