DOHA: Qatar General Insurance and Reinsurance Company (QGIRCO), which is developing a huge real estate project in Algeria, is expecting it to be completed by the end of this year.
QGIRCO, with diversified business interests and operations, in Qatar and overseas, remained resilient in 2017 despite the challenges. The company is planning to expand and reinforce its position in the North Africa region, especially in Algeria where it has diversified business operations.
“We are concentrating more in the North African market, particularly in Algeria, where we are having one of the biggest real estate projects in the capital city of Algiers. It’s a mixed used project consisting of 11 buildings, including a hotel (Marriot), office buildings a mall and shopping centres, which are expected to be completed by the last quarter of this year,” QGIRCO group’s Chairman and Managing Director Sheikh Nasser bin Ali Al Thani told The Peninsula. Sheikh Nasser added: “We are expecting the project to be the biggest revenue and profit generator for the group for the coming years.”
On estimated cost of the project and total investment, he said that the numbers were not readily available with him, but the plot of the land was purchased way back in 1996. And the value of the land property has appreciated at an astronomical rate over the last two decades. He noted that QGIRCO is a well diversified company with business interests in a wide range of industries, which include banking, insurance, re-insurance, real estate, and hospitality sector among others.
“We have already established a shareholding company namely Trust Holding Investment Algeria Company which has wide operations in the North African country,” added Sheikh Nasser. “2017 was a challenging year, especially for the insurance and re-insurance industry. But due to our diversified business and overseas exposure, we managed to remain resilient and distributed 22 percent dividend to shareholders, equivalent to QR2.2 per share.”
Initially the company in Algeria was named as ‘Trust Investment Holding Algeria’ when it was established in 1998 under the name of ‘Trust Investment Algeria’, a shareholding company, and was later renamed to ‘Trust Holding Investment Algeria Company’.
The holding company supervises and manages several subsidiaries, which include Trust Bank Algeria, a leading bank in the country; Trust Real Estate, a real estate developer of residential and hospitality projects including the “Bab Ezzouar” project in Algiers, and Trust Industries, which specialises in manufacturing of bricks, tiles and other construction materials.
Replying to question on acquisition or expansion plans in Qatar and outside, Sheikh Nasser reiterated that the company is well-positioned and open minded to any types of growth and expansion, be organic and inorganic, provided there are good opportunities which satisfy the company’s long term strategy and shareholders’ interests.
Commenting on the company’s growth prospects in Qatar, Sheikh Nasser said: “I am also the Chairman of the World Trade Centre (WTC)-Qatar, which is one of the flagship projects in the country, and we are very optimistic about the opportunities arising from the property.”