Bahrain Financial Harbour Appoints Chesterton International as Marketing Consultants for Asia
The US$1.3 billion Bahrain Financial Harbour (BFH), coming up in the financial capital of the Middle East, Manama, the Kingdom of Bahrain, Wednesday announced appointing the Singapore-based global property agents and consultants, Chesterton International, as its sales, leasing and marketing consultants for the strategic markets of South East Asia and the Far East.
In a joint press statement issued on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Asia Roundtable, senior representatives of BFH and Chesterton International said that strategic marketing of the unique integrated development which will reinforce the reputation of the Kingdom of Bahrain as the Middle East’s hub of financial industry will commence soon in the Asian markets.
Commenting on the role Chesterton will play in promoting the BFH development, Mr. Esam Janahi, Chairman of the Bahrain Financial Harbour Holding Co B.S.C. (c) said: “With this arrangement, BFH enters a new and crucial phase – that of showcasing the components to potential tenants and enable BFH to leverage Chesterton's expertise in Asian property markets.”
“The BFH concept has already evoked tremendous interest among investors in Asia. Chesterton will now offer them a firm opportunity to make a foray into Middle East’s lucrative financial markets,” he said.
BFH is planned as a landmark integrated development that will be home to the entire value chain in the financial services sector. The unique waterfront business and financial district on Manama Corniche will offer commercial, residential and leisure facilities comprising 30 individual development land parcels spanning 380,000 sq metres. The development of BFH is now on an accelerated pace with the construction of Phase I gathering momentum, scheduled for completion at the end of 2006. Simultaneously, the second phase of reclamation works on the project is now underway.
Elaborating on the merits of the partnership, Mr. Ricky Sim, Managing Director of Chesterton International, said: “We are delighted to be associated with BFH, one of the Middle East‘s pioneering and world-class projects. The South East Asia and Far East markets are significant to BFH, given its strong business ties with the Middle East. Our in-depth knowledge of local markets will enable us to successfully create awareness about BFH among potential Asian investors.”
Chesterton International, which has in-depth knowledge of the Asian property markets, has a vast network of offices spread across Asia, North America, Europe, Middle East, Australia and the Caribbean. The group’s strong presence in South East Asia and Far East markets coupled with its vast expertise in property dealings will enable it to successfully promote the BFH Development.
“There is definitely keen interest among Asian investors towards the Middle East. We are confident that BFH will offer an unmatched value proposition to Asian investors with an array of business components under one roof,” Mr. Sim said.
Besides aggressively promoting BFH in Asian markets, Chesterton will also work closely with Knight Frank LLP (UK), the global real estate consultancy – the marketing, sales and leasing agents for US$270 million Financial Centre, the central component of the BFH development.
The Financial Centre which is now open for sale consists of three components – a 53-storey Dual Towers, a 9-storey Financial Mall and 10-storey Harbour House. The Dual Towers will provide office and commercial space for the financial services industry while the Financial Mall is designed specifically for capital markets and will house the Bahrain Stock Exchange (BSE) as well as brokerage and trading firms. The Harbour House will accommodate media enterprises and marketing agencies specialising in business, finance and investment.
Chesterton, with its sophisticated systems, processes and procedures, will also promote the insurance component of the BFH, including the Bahrain International Insurance Centre (BIIC), which is being developed as an international insurance hub for the Middle East. BIIC provides a net leasable area of around 19,000 square metres comprising a stand-alone 22-storey tower.
Launched under the auspices of the Bahrain Monetary Agency (BMA), the banking and insurance regulator of the Kingdom of Bahrain, BIIC will have under its roof, insurance companies, reinsurance majors and providers of specialist insurance services, making it the single-largest composite development in the regional insurance industry.
The ground and first floor of BIIC will be developed as an atrium space lined with outlets for insurance services. The second floor will host a conference and meeting room facility. The Bahrain Insurance Association will have its offices in BIIC to provide statutory back-up to insurers.
“The tremendous untapped potential in the insurance industry in the Middle East will present a significant opportunity to Asian investors. BIIC and the remaining insurance components of BFH will speed up the growth of this sector in the Kingdom, attracting considerable inward investments,” Mr. Sim added.
© 2005 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)
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