DP World’s flagship Jebel Ali Port has won the prestigious Shipping Port of the Year Award at the annual Supply Chain and Transport Awards (Scata) 2012.
The award, Jebel Ali’s fourth in six years, was received on behalf of DP World by Mohammed Ali Ahmed, chief operating officer, DP World, UAE Region, at the Scata annual gala attended by hundreds of supply chain industry leaders.
The award is recognition of Jebel Ali’s exceptional management and innovative approach to improve operational efficiencies, with the purpose of providing outstanding services to its customers.
DP World, UAE Region has over the past two years introduced a series of initiatives aimed at boosting efficiency; those include a technology-driven labour management system that cuts time of completing a single operation by up to 30 per cent, advanced Gate Automation supported by RFID container tracking to enable 20,000 truck movements a day, and 3G connectivity to enable shipping lines to access bay and stowage plan information, helping them cut port call time.
Late last year DP World announced plans to expand capacity to cater to the next generation ultra large container ships at Jebel Ali. When completed, the expansion will raise the port’s total capacity to 19 million TEU by 2014, in line with emerging customer demand.
Mohammed Ali Ahmed, chief operating officer, DP World, UAE Region, said: “This prestigious supply chain award recognises our service excellence as well as the leadership position DP World plays as the gateway for cargo into the GCC, Middle East, Indian Subcontinent and Africa.”
“Our investment today will ensure Jebel Ali continues to meet our customer requirements for additional capacity and efficiency improvements. We thank Scata for the honour,” he added.
The Scata 2012 ceremony, organised by magazine publisher ITP Business, included 16 categories in total, covering the logistics, sea freight and air cargo sectors. Nominations were assessed by a prestigious panel of experts, selected from within the Middle East logistics industry.
Emaar reported a 44 per cent rise in first-quarter profit on Saturday, beating analysts’ forecasts. Its shares are market favourites. They stand 23 per cent higher than their level at the end of last year, compared to an 18 per cent gain for Dubai’s main market index.
Haissam Arabi, chief executive and fund manager at Gulfmena Investments, said he expected Emaar’s current share price of about 3.08 dirhams to rise to 4.20 by year-end.
“A 12x multiple for Emaar in my opinion is now warranted – I take 12 times their expected earnings for 2012 and get my fair value,” Arabi said.
The success of Emaar does not signal recovery for real estate firms in general, however. The company’s mall and retail businesses contributed a third of total revenues in the last quarter; stronger property prices and deliveries of new units are not making as much of an impact on earnings growth.
The earnings of Deyaar Development, which posted a 64 per cent drop in its first-quarter net profit, showed many developers remain under pressure.
“While we are seeing positive signs, the improvement in residential real estate in Dubai is still not trickling through,” said Arabi.
“It will still take a few more quarters or maybe 2013 before we see unit sales go up from developers’ books. Following which, we might start seeing its impact on bottom-line growth.”
Meanwhile, the picture remains difficult for Abu Dhabi developers, with new supply expected to put downward pressure on prices.
“Abu Dhabi is now entering into a key phase of its development cycle, with around 23,000 residential units and significant new office supply being delivered this year alone,” said Green at CB Richard Ellis.
“This is likely to result in sustained rental declines for the year ahead, albeit at a less aggressive rate than was recorded during 2009 and 2010.”
While the share prices of the two biggest developers have rallied sharply this year, with Aldar Properties up 24 per cent and Sorouh Real Estate up 33 per cent, much of those gains have been driven by upbeat sentiment in the overall stock market, as well as by positive expectations for the planned, state-backed merger of the two companies.
Aldar is cleaning up its balance sheet with the help of government funds, and marked a profit in the first quarter after it sold land and residential units to the state.
But the company still has to cope with a huge supply of high-end homes entering the market. Property prices in Abu Dhabi are expected to fall another 11 per cent from current levels, a Reuters poll of analysts showed in January.
Sorouh is also feeling the pinch in property prices, though its balance sheet appears stronger than Aldar’s. It posted a 30 per cent rise in quarterly profit, in line with analysts’ estimates, and said it will deliver around 9,300 housing units by the end of 2013.