Meraas, in partnership with Dubai Holding, has announced the agreement with D-Marin, to attract international investments and promote Dubai as the preferred destination for luxury yachting and boating internationally.
The joint venture agreement was signed at MB92 premises in Barcelona by His Excellency Abdulla AlHabbai, Group Chairman of Meraas and Chairman of Dubai Holding, and FeritŞahenk, Chairman of the Doğuş Group, the parent company of D-Marin. It reflects a commitment by Meraas and Dubai Holding to contribute to the diversification and growth of Dubai's economy and enhance its position as a major holiday and luxury marine tourism destination in the region and the world.
The partnership seeks also to establish a regional centre with global standard for renovation, service and maintenance of luxury yachts and boats in Dubai, similar to D-Marin backed MB92, which is currently serviced by branches in Barcelona, Spain and La Ciotat, France. It also includes long-term provisions for the development of additional marina lifestyle offerings through a broader ecosystem of services and investments that extend into other sectors in the Middle East and Far East regions.
With the completion of Dubai Harbour, Meraas will own and operate the largest marina in the Middle East and North Africa with 1,100 berths, doubling the berths available in the UAE.
His Excellency Abdulla AlHabbai, Chairman of Meraas Group and Chairman of Dubai Holding, said: "This agreement will contribute to attracting new foreign investment to Dubai, which has high rates of direct investment growth in high value sectors. This move is in line with the sustained efforts of Meraas and Dubai Holding to realize the Dubai Plan 2021 to diversify the UAE's economy and promote its sustainable growth throughincreasing the contribution to GDP of vital sectors such as tourism and related activities, including luxury yachting and maritime transportation. In doing so, the companies seek to boostDubai's status as one of the top five global tourism, trade, transport and finance hubs.”
He also mentioned that "Dubai has attractive comparative advantages in the marinasector due to the UAE’s long-standing maritimeheritage. This strategic agreement with D-Marin will harness the combined expertise to develop marinas facilities and services and provide infrastructure, as well as enhance Dubai's presence and status as a favourite destination for yacht owners and users around the world.”
Right to Left_ His Excellency Abdulla Al Habbai and Ferit Sahenk
As part of this partnership, D-Marin focuses on managing marinas through its advisory services on the technical and design aspects of building marinas at a competitive cost. The establishment of a local base in Dubai will also ensure integration with its current operations in South East Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean region. The company will additionally provide marketing and advertising support and offer the accumulated experience and best practices of its senior management team. The partnership aims to provide world class services to boat and yacht owners and users around the world and to create a calendar of marine activities, boat races and other marine events, contributing to strengthening Dubai's position as a global hub for this sector.
Ferit Şahenk, Chairman of the Doğuş Group said: “As Doğuş Group, we have been actively growing in Dubai since 2011 with our real estate and food & beverage business and are very grateful for the opportunities Dubai has offered us. Through this partnership and our regional centre in Dubai, we will invest in the long-term potential of this city and look forward to taking advantage of opportunities in the management and development of marinas in the GCCregion….We thank Meraas and Dubai Holding for the trust they have placed in us and reaffirm our deep commitment to cementingthis partnership with many achievements.”
The yacht market with its requirement of marina berths, logistical needs, maintenance and management is characterised by high spending rates, while the demand for yachts and luxury boats from international tourism is growing. This is also increasingly contributing to attracting wealthy yacht owners for tourism and investment.