Hussain Sajwani was certain that he would never want to be a businessman because as a youth he was made to work long hours after school in his father’s clock shop. He surmised that it would be much better to just get a degree and work regular hours as a professional.
However, his attitude changed when he was able to purchase large amounts of candy and then resell it at a nice profit to his fellow students in school. He went on to graduate from the University of Washington in the US and became an oil company executive in his native Dubai.
When the Gulf War broke out, Sajwani saw an opportunity and formed a company that fed the US Army and other major contractors in the area at the time. The food catering business is still a major part of Sajwani’s business empire.
In 2002, Sajwani seized upon a major economic shift when the United Arab Emirate passed a decree that allowed foreigners to take up residence in the area. In 2002 he formed Damac Properties which was to become a major real estate company in the area. Through shrewd and imaginative promotion, finance and sales, he was able to sell out his first 38 story apartment project withing six months. This was completed before any construction had begun.
The Damac owner is very good friends with Donald Trump and they have partnered to include Donald Trump golf courses on two of the Damac properties, designed by Tiger Woods.
Sajwani always pays cash for the land when he begins a new development, and he keeps a large cash reserve for each project in case the economy turns. In this way there is always money for construction. There is never any more than 20 percent of a project that is financed and separate bank accounts are kept for each project. In this way, each project stands on its own.
Members of the Hussain Sajwani family who wishes to be involved with Damac can be a part Damac and its activities if they wish to be. Sajwani keeps his eye on the future and his legacy of passing the business on to the next generation.
Follow Hussain Sajwani on twitter @hussainsajwani.