• Barwa General Assembly distributes cash dividends of 25%.
• Al-Ali: The financial year 2017 is the beginning of reaping the benefits of what has been done in recent years.
• Al Ali: Ongoing work on completion of investment plans for the Group's land banks within Qatar with a total area of 5.5 million square meters.
• Al Ali: Enhancing the real estate portfolio of the Group in 2018 with 806 housing units, 25,360 worker rooms, 314 thousand square meters as rental areas for warehouses, showrooms, offices and shops.
• Al Mohannadi: Barwa's new development philosophy is the driving force of the Group's outstanding results.
Barwa Real Estate held its Annual Ordinary General Assembly Meeting on Tuesday 27th February 2018 in Scarlett Hall - Millennium Plaza Hotel Doha. The meeting discussed and approved all the items on the Agenda of the Ordinary General Assembly, including the Board of Directors' report, the financial statements of the Group for the year 2017, Auditors' report, Shari'a Supervisory Board report and the Corporate Governance report. Moreover, the meeting endorsed the recommendation to distribute cash dividends of 25%. The Board of Directors were absolved of any liability and their remuneration was determined. The meeting ended with the appointment of Auditors for the financial year 2018.
During the meeting, H.E. Mr. Salah Bin Ghanim Bin Nasser Al Ali presented to the shareholders the Board of Directors' report which included a full review of the company's activities, performance and consolidated financial statements for the year 2017 as well as its future plans.
His Excellency said that the financial year 2017 reflected the beginning of reaping the benefits of the success in recent years, during which Barwa focused on developing, following up and supporting the necessary plans to achieve its primary objective of increasing sustainable returns for its shareholders. H.E. stressed that work has been done on several streams, including:
- Continued support of the Group's operational real estate portfolio through the implementation of new projects in a timely and cost-effective manner.
- Making the best investment plans necessary for the development of the Group's land banks, located within the State of Qatar with a total area of 5.5 million square meters.
-Ongoing work on enhancing operational efficiency of the current projects in order to maximize the benefits of the assets.
On the Financial Level:
His Excellency said that the company succeeded in achieving a net profit attributable to the shareholders of the parent company of QR 1,705 million and an EPS of QR 4.38 with an increase of QR 100 million equivalent to 6% compared to the year ended 31 December 2016. Also, the Group has succeeded in enhancing its operating revenues through increasing its net rental income by QR 140 million, an increase of 18% compared to the year 2016. Moreover, the net revenue of consultancy services and other services increased by QR 85 million.
On the operational level, H.E. Mr. Salah Bin Ghanim Al Ali touched on some remarkable achievements including:
• Completion and start of the operations of phase one of Madinat AlMawater and also the start of operations of Barwa AlKhor - housing staff project for Shell Employees.
• Leasing of the entire Mustawdaat Project for 10 years and a half with a total value of QR 755 million.
• The Group's real estate portfolio has grown to include 6,639 housing units, 12,706 worker rooms and 265,000 square meters of shops, showrooms and offices.
• Initiating the construction of Barwa Village Extension project, Phase two of Madinat AlMawater and Warehouses and Workshops project in Barwa AlBaraha with an overall total construction cost of QR 316 million.
• Initiating the construction of the Affordable Housing Development for laborers on Salwa Road, with a total built-up area of 730,728 square meters and a construction cost estimated at QR 1,295 million.
• Improving the operational efficiency of the Group's current projects where the occupancy rate in most of them exceeds 95%.
As for the Company's activities with regards to Governance and Risk Management, H.E. Mr. Salah Bin Ghanim Al Ali stated that Barwa Real Estate emphasizes the importance of promoting and spreading a culture of openness and transparency in its commercial and administrative transactions through ensuring the highest levels of compliance with Corporate Governance Code of Listed Companies, as regulated by Qatar Financial Markets Authority.
H.E. stressed the significance of Human Capital as the main asset to attain the Group's strategic objectives and in light of Barwa's contribution in achieving Qatar 2030 Vision regarding the development of human capital. H.E. stated that Barwa always focuses on the development of its human capital through cooperation with the executive management; mainly consisting of highly Qatari qualified personnel to develop and implement various training schemes aiming to enhance the necessary staff expertise in order to achieve the sought after development and efficiencies. Also, there is continuous work to strengthen the team with new elements from both experienced and recent graduates to secure a continued source of able personnel ready to take the responsibility.
On Social Responsibility, H.E. stated that Barwa seeks to fulfill its social responsibilities by committing to contribute in achieving economic development and its awareness that the role of national companies is significant to the development process and that it is not isolated from society and its pressing issues. Barwa is always a major contributor to the society development through enhancing partnership with the state to activate many developmental real estate initiatives. It also adopts an architectural philosophy that transcends the concepts of real estate investment and works, resulting in innovative residential solutions that meet the requirements of various community groups, especially those with middle income. Barwa is also keen to provide a number of housing units for associations and social institutions in Qatar.
The Company's Future Plans for the year 2018:
H.E. stressed that the Group has many future plans for 2018, including:
• Completing the construction and operating of several projects, mainly: the Affordable Housing Development for laborers on Salwa Road, and phase two of Madinat Al Mawater, in addition to the ongoing work on the construction of Barwa Village extension Project, Dara (A) in Lusail and other projects, which upon completion, will add the following to the Group's operational portfolio:
- 806 housing units,
- 25,360 rooms for workers,
- 314 thousand square meters as rental space for showrooms, warehouses, offices and shops.
• Ongoing work on the master plans and designs for many projects, including but not limited: Dara B-F project in Lusail, Barwa AlDoha project and Lusail project and then initiating the construction.
• Continuing work on improving the performance efficiency of the Group's subsidiary companies.
Furthermore, the Group will continue to analyze available investment opportunities in light of its Business Plan in order to achieve sustainable growth and ensure profitable revenues for the Group's shareholders.
For his part, Mr. Salman Bin Mohammed Al Mohannadi Group Chief Executive Officer commented on the Company's achievements in 2017 stating that despite the challenges that the financial year 2017 witnessed due to the blockade and the obstacles resulting from it, thanks to God and the wisdom of our wise government, and the measures taken to counter the impacts, as well as the directives of the Board of Directors headed by His Excellency Mr. Salah Bin Ghanim Al-Ali, Barwa has been able to move forward in achieving its basic mission of meeting the aspirations of its shareholders, working on achieving sustainable revenue growth and continuous increase of operating revenues.
Al-Mohannadi stressed that the Group's achievements in the development of various projects that have the best rates in terms of speed of delivery and cost efficiency without any negative impact on quality come as part of the new development philosophy of the Group. This philosophy is mainly based on creating a unique character for Barwa in the real estate market through the development of a new architectural model based on the development of integrated urban communities (residential and commercial) that provide all the requirements of the residents and feature a unique and yet simple architecture design, that helps to achieve all sought after benefits, while taking into consideration maintaining the ancient Qatari architectural style.
At the end of the meeting, H.E. Mr. Salah Bin Ghanim Al-Ali, extended his deepest appreciation and gratitude to the wise leadership of H.H Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, the Emir of the State of Qatar, and His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Bin Khalifa Al Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Interior. He also extended his gratitude to the company's shareholders and employees, for their continuous support to achieve the Company's goals which serve the interest of the country and its citizens.
The Extraordinary meeting of the General Assembly was adjourned to be held on Tuesday 6 march 2018 due to lack of quorum.