Interviews Talal Al-Gaddah, CEO of MAG Property Development Published 1 year ago on June 29, 2016 By The Asian Entrepreneur Authors & Contributors Share Tweet Since its formation in 1978, Mag Property Development has evolved to become a powerful and vibrant group of more than 50 companies and branches covering almost every country in the world with over 2,000 employees. As the CEO of MAG Property Development, Talal Moafaq Al Gaddah is responsible for overseeing the company’s overall direction and its organisational strategy. Heading the organisation’s six departments – Finance, Project Management, Sales, Marketing, Administration and Legal, Talal’s leadership and management skills are driving MAG Property Development to new heights. Talal’s aim is to consolidate MAG Property Development’s position as one of the top five real estate developers in the UAE, with the ultimate goal of expanding the company’s already considerable footprint to the Far East, Europe, the USA and even further afield. Talal’s drive and enthusiasm is underpinned by his extensive background of industry success, much of it attained within the MAG Group. Prior to being appointed to his current role, he was Director of Sales and Marketing at Invest Group Overseas – a property development arm of MAG Group and the sister company for MAG Property Development. During his tenure, Talal achieved sales of AED1.5 billion in 12 months for The Polo Townhouses and The Polo Residence in Dubai, UAE. He was also instrumental in opening up new markets, including the successful launch of The Gate in Frisco City, Texas, USA. The entire Texas development was initiated by Talal and he was responsible for overseeing its every aspect from conception to completion. Talal’s dynamism in his role was enhanced by a year spent learning Leadership in Communication Strategy skills at the renowned UCLA in California, USA, where he was a student from 2011 to 2012. His studies enhanced the Bachelor’s degree in Business he was awarded in the Netherlands in 2007. MAG Property Development is the real estate development arm of MAG Group- one of the region’s largest corporate entities. The division is spearheading MAG Group’s ambition to be at the forefront of the region’s real estate industry through its dedication to the group’s corporate philosophy of innovation and continuous improvement. MAG Property Development aims to be a leader in the real estate construction industry by employing the highest standards to make a difference in people’s lives. MAG Property Development is committed to MAG Group’s code of ethics that base its business practices on honesty and integrity – uncompromising principles that are reflected at every level of its operations. MAG Group started out from humble beginnings in 1978 to become a major business conglomerate with an extensive overseas reach. In less than 40 years, entrepreneur and MAG Group founder Moafaq Al Gaddah has grown his holdings from a single spare parts trading concern in Abu Dhabi into an international empire of around 50 companies, covering the sectors of manufacturing, auto parts, real estate, education, contracting, hospitality, freight, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, the marine industry and logistics. There are now MAG offices across the Middle East, GCC, China, Turkey, Iraq and the USA, employing over 2,000 staff. MAG Group’s spectacular level of growth and success in under four decades has been attributed in part to the organisation’s incredibly high ethical standards. Throughout its expansion and movement into new industry sectors, MAG Group has developed an enviable reputation for integrity, transparency and financial probity in all its operations. The real estate division’s (MAG Property Development’s) state- of-the-art residential buildings include MAG Complex (Sharjah), MAG 214 (Dubai’s JLT), MAG 218 (Dubai Marina) and MAG 5 Residences (Abu Dhabi). Amongst MAG Property Development’s forthcoming projects include an exciting project located in Downtown, MAG 5 Boulevard in Dubai South, MAG 230, which is situated on Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road facing Al Barari; MAG 226 at Jumeirah Village Circle; The Polo Residence (Meydan); The Polo Townhouses (Meydan); Worldcare Wellness Centre (DHCC); Art Centre (Dubai) and Shoumous Residential (Sharjah). MAG Property Development strongly believes in following His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s vision. Its success has been due to this ethos and it is this DNA that runs through the group. His vision of Dubai Marina led to the development of MAG 218. His vision of JLT led to the development of MAG 214. When his vision then shifted towards building the Financial Centre, MAG PD built Emirates Financial Towers. He then decided to move the equestrian world from Nad El Sheba to Meydan, where (via its sister company IGO) they have since completed 106 homes in The Polo Townhouses and are halfway through a one of a kind, gated apartment community project called The Polo Residence. It has long since been proven that His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum will act on his vision and it is important for MAG PD to do so as well. The announcement of Dubai South in August 2015 led to the MAG 5 Boulevard project. The importance of happiness and affordability are a top priority for His Highness and MAG Property Development are developing within the city of happiness, housing the largest and most expensive airport in the world and – of course – the EXPO 2020. Along with MAG 230 (AED700 million), MAG 226 (AED250 million) and Worldcare Wellness Centre (AED 1 billion), Talal is now implementing his current project worth AED700 million. MAG Property Development’s most recent launch has been MAG 5 Boulevard- a new integrated and affordable residential community. Offering 1,172 residential units, as well as providing retail, dining, leisure and entertainment amenities, MAG 5 Boulevard is a 24-hour walkable living community covering more than 800,000ft2 of land. Handover for the development is scheduled to commence in Q4 2018. This project will be the first developed community in Dubai South, with several facilities that ensure that all residents will have access to many activities within their own backyard. A community pool, club house and landscaping will enrich the social life of the MAG 5 Boulevard community. The buildings are all designed to be in harmony with the surrounding environment of Dubai South, with the company committed to creating a green development that complies with the new direction for Dubai’s buildings to be environmentally friendly. Talal is renowned for his leadership skills and selecting the right people around him. As a result, MAG PD is one of the top employers in the UAE and selection is key. He is also known for his attention to detail- a skill that makes all the difference in the world of development. His natural abilities allow him to determine successful land purchase by envisaging what could be built there and by recognizing the gaps in the market. He listens, learns and guides all at the same time. For him, the most important thing is to not sit on any item and to make sure he keeps moving forward. Decision-making is key. Talal has to make many decisions on a daily basis and make them fast. His mentor is the chairman, whom he has seen grow to extremely great heights and ,having had the opportunity to shadow him, he now has the opportunity to unleash AED 6 billion worth of real estate within the next three years and the vision to become known as the number one developer in the MENA region. Related Topics:billionbusinessCEOEducationEntrepreneurfinancegrowthhealthcareimportanceleadershiplifeMarketingmentorsuccess Continue Reading You may like 10 Effective Funding Models for Non-Profit Startups Malcolm Tan, Founder of Gravitas Holdings Women on Top in Tech – Pam Weber, Chief Marketing Officer at 99Designs Renata Brkić William Chin, Founder of Mummy’s Market How We Can Innovate the Legal Industry like Elon Musk Callum Connects Malcolm Tan, Founder of Gravitas Holdings Published 1 day ago on December 15, 2017 By Callum Laing Malcolm Tan is an ICO/ITO and Cryptocurrency advisor. He sees this new era as similar to when the internet launched. What’s your story? I’m a lawyer entrepreneur who owns multiple businesses, and who is now stepping into the Initial Coin Offering/Initial Token Offering/Cryptocurrency space to be a thought leader, writer (How to ICO/ITO in Singapore – A Regulatory and Compliance Viewpoint on Initial Coin Offering and Initial Token Offering in Singapore), and advisor through Gravitas Holdings – an ICO Advisory company. We are also running our own ICO campaign called AEXON, and advising 2 other ICO’s on their projects. What excites you most about your industry? It is the start of a whole new paradigm, and it is like being at the start of the internet era all over again. We have a chance to influence and shape the industry over the next decade and beyond and lead the paradigm shift. What’s your connection to Asia? I’m Singaporean and most of my business revolves around the ASEAN region. Our new ICO advisory company specialises in Singaporean ICO’s and we are now building partnerships around the region as well. One of the core business offerings of our AEXON ICO/ITO is to open up co-working spaces around the region, with a target to open 25 outlets, and perhaps more thereafter. Favourite city in Asia for business and why? Singapore, since it is my hometown and most of my business contacts originate from or are located in Singapore. It is also a very open and easy place to do business. What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Be careful of your clients – sometimes they can be your worst enemies. This is very true and you have to always be careful about whom you deal with. The closest people are the ones that you trust and sometimes they have other agendas or simply don’t tell you the truth or whole story and that can easily put one in a very disadvantageous position. Who inspires you? Leonardo Da Vinci as a polymath and genius and leader in many fields, and in today’s world, Elon Musk for being a polymath and risk taker and energetic business leader. What have you just learnt recently that blew you away? Early stage bitcoin investors would have made 1,000,000 times profit if they had held onto their bitcoins from the start to today – in the short space of 7 years. If you had your time again, what would you do differently? Seek out good partnerships and networks from day one, and use the power of the group to grow and do things together, instead of being bogged down by operations and going it alone from start. How do you unwind? I hardly have any time for relaxation right now. I used to have very intense hobbies, chess when I was younger, bridge, bowling, some online real time strategy games and poker. All mentally stimulating games and requiring focus – I did all these at competitive levels and participated in national and international tournaments, winning multiple trophies, medals and awards in most of these fields. Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why? Phuket – nature, resort life, beaches, good food and a vibrant crowd. Everyone in business should read this book: Rich Dad Poor Dad by Richard Kiyosaki Shameless plug for your business: Gravitas Holdings (Pte) Limited is the premier ICO Advisory company and we can do a full service for entrepreneurs, including legal and compliance, smart contracts and token creation, marketing and PR, and business advisory and white paper writing/planning. How can people connect with you? Write emails to [email protected], or [email protected] Twitter handle? @malcolmABM — This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’. Connect with Callum here: twitter.com/laingcallum linkedin.com/in/callumlaing Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com Continue Reading Callum Connects William Chin, Founder of Mummy’s Market Published 2 days ago on December 14, 2017 By Callum Laing William Chin set up Mummy’s Market. Mummy’s Market is the uncontested platform connecting parents and retailers in Singapore. What’s your story? After National Service, I enjoyed a rousing start to my corporate career with successful stints at events and conventions companies such as IQPC, Hannover Fairs Australia and Lighthouse Independent Media in management roles, building my experience in conventions, trade fairs and events. However, I hit a particularly bad streak of unemployment after that, facing difficulty finding jobs because according to recruiters, I was overqualified, yet too young. In fact, at one point I was struggling so badly with my family loans that I was sharing bowls of ramen with my girlfriend for our meals, to save costs. My financial pressures eventually culminated in my forced venture into entrepreneurship where I had to strike out my own path with a brief stint in Expomal. However, this turned out to be my next break that fuelled my current success. It was there I built up Smartkids (another wildly successful baby and child fair) before it was bought out by a bigger company. Inspired by SmartKids, I started Mummy’s Market and eventually Baby’s Market, outperforming established names in the business to take its current place as market leader. What excites you most about your industry? Mummy’s Market is the industry leader in baby, kids, maternity and household with 80% market share and our clients – coupled with branding, advertising and exhibiting on Mummy’s Market platforms, we are seeing a 30-60% company growth year on year despite the downturn in the economy. With attendance of over 100k consumers per fair and serving 70-80% of pregnant mums, our actual business is in data, data collection and processing from consumer fairs. I am excited about how big data analytics from Mummy’s Market can be applied at every stage of the retail process such as data segmentation – for retailers now when mums are giving birth to sending relevant content over. This will transform and innovate the industry of baby fairs and Mummy’s Market, with the huge amount of data we process from our fairs yearly, is the forerunner in this disruption. With this, we have transformed the DNA of how digital business has always been done. Global online marketplaces are burning cash quickly to achieve big data analytics, but not us. Another testament to Mummy’s Market’s popularity is that huge marketplaces have been trying to pass off as Mummy’s Market. It shows that we are heading in the right direction and the most exciting part is, we are only at 10% of where we want to be – a platform where $1 billion gross market value products are transacted annually around Asia in a niche market. What’s your connection to Asia? I was born and bred in Singapore, and intend to stay in Singapore to build the Mummy’s Market brand. Favourite city in Asia for business and why? Singapore – if one can strategically become a leader in a small market like Singapore, its grounds to show that one’s business has an opportunity to grow further in larger countries. What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? “It is easy to become number 1 because the others can just copy and tweak to overtake you. It is more difficult to STAY number 1, because you have no one to copy. You have to innovate.” Who inspires you? Steve Jobs – he transformed the digital age. Without the invention of smartphones, mobile computing and mobile advertising would never have grown. He changed the way businesses and consumers communicate. Without the introduction of iPhones, mobile applications would have never existed the way we are using them today. What have you just learnt recently that blew you away? You no longer have to lick stamps to make it sticky. If you had your time again, what would you do differently? Nothing. I love my life and my family. And I love the platform Mummy’s Market has created to help businesses grow. How do you unwind? I play with my little 1 year old baby girl. Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why? Taiwan – cool weather with beautiful mountains and lake scenery. Everyone in business should read this book: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey Shameless plug for your business: Mummy’s Market has established its reputation as not just Singapore’s but Southeast Asia’s largest baby fair: Nearly S$100 million gross merchandise volume transacted on Mummy’s Market platforms annually 800,000 visitors at its fairs yearly 80% of all of Singapore’s baby product distributors in one convention 15-20% year on year increase in sales volume at every baby fair since its inception Apart from market dominance, Mummy’s Market also has the largest database of parents and the number 1 platform for MNCs and SMEs to reach out to this audience. From exhibitions, magazines, seminars to digital campaigns and roadshows. Mummy’s Market is the uncontested platform connecting parents and retailers in Singapore. How can people connect with you? [email protected] https://www.linkedin.com/in/william-chin-23910a9/ — This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’. 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