Damac Properties appoints Farooq Arjomand as chairman

The company's former vice chairman takes the helm after bid by founder Hussain Sajwani last week to take the company private

Dubai’s Damac Properties appointed Farooq Arjomand as chairman after the resignation of majority owner Hussain Sajwani, who launched a bid to take the company private last week.

Mr Arjomand was previously vice chairman of the developer. Ali Binjab was appointed vice chairman, the company said in a statement on Tuesday to the Dubai Financial Market, where its shares are traded.

Both appointments take place "with immediate effect", the company said.

Mr Arjomand is the chairman of the Dubai-based Arjomand Group, which is active in 15 industries with offices in Europe, the Far East and the GCC countries, according to his blog. He is also a founding member of the boards of Amlak Finance and Emaar Properties, according to the former's website.

Mr Arjomand holds a degree in business management from Seattle Pacific University in the US and worked at HSBC bank for 17 years.

The new appointments follow company founder Mr Sajwani's resignation to avoid a conflict of interest after he announced his intention to take the company private on June 9.

Mr Sajwani, who owns about 72 per cent of Damac’s shares, launched a Dh2.18 billion ($595m) bid for the remaining 28 per cent, offering Dh1.30 a share, equal to the closing price for the company’s shares last Tuesday, the day before the bid was announced.

Damac has appointed a number of companies to advise on the offer. KPMG Lower Gulf has been appointed valuer while Arqaam Capital has been appointed financial adviser to evaluate the offer from Maple Invest, a Cayman Islands-based company owned by Mr Sajwani that made the bid. Al Tamimi & Company has been named as legal adviser.

Damac, which built the Middle East’s only Trump-branded golf course, has reported six successive quarterly losses and its share price has fallen by about 68 per cent from its most recent peak in August 2017.

The company reported a loss of Dh189.6 million in the first quarter of this year, compared with a Dh106.1m loss in the same period last year.

Revenue fell to Dh642.2m, from Dh1.23bn in the same period last year.

Damac has projects in a number of countries including the UAE, Lebanon, the UK, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

As of March 31, it had delivered 33,334 homes and had a development portfolio of 33,000 more units at various stages of progress and planning, according to its website.