ORA, a relative newcomer to Egypt’s real estate market, has already built a reputation for itself as a force to be reckoned with, bringing fresh ideas that are attracting everyone’s attention. With Haitham Mohamed, the new CEO at its helm, ORA has launched its newest and biggest project to date, ZED, a posh development located in Sheikh Zayed, one of Cairo’s exclusive suburbs. eniGma’s Ezz Al Turkey sat down with Mohamed to learn more about him, ORA and its recently launched project, ZED.
Can you tell eniGma’s readers a little bit about your career journey?
I started my career in the telecommunication industry, working with Orascom Telecom for eleven years. I was part of the team that started our operations in 17 different countries across Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. In 2011, I made a career shift to real estate, initially working with SODIC, then moving to Amer Group. Finally, I joined ORA, where our aim is to create developments that are designed to be both beautiful and environmentally sustainable.
What made you want to get into real estate development?
Real Estate is an extremely challenging sector; and I am always up for a challenge. In this sector you have to keep track of what all the other companies are doing all the time. It’s also a sector with a lot of players, which makes it more challenging because to succeed you have to offer something that only you, as a company, can provide – whether it’s a service or a product.
Real estate is an ever-changing game, how do you make sure you’re always on top and different from the rest?
ORA’s aim is to give clients what they cannot get anywhere else. When we thought of ZED’s concept, we were aiming to launch a project that would fill a market gap in Egypt. ZED in Sheikh Zayed offers Egypt its first park-side living. The project is a flagship mixed-use development spanning over 165 feddans with the park located in the heart of it. It envisions the creation of a self-sustained community by integrating residential, commercial and administrative uses into one space; thus accommodating all living needs and essential activities in one destination.
With our recent acquisition of 400 feddans in East New Cairo, we are aiming to build a similar development there that will also serve as the go-to destination for adjacent communities.
What can we expect from ZED next?
Always expect something new, innovative, and special that sparks happiness in everyone. Expect world-class events and activities. Ora planned an extensive entertainment calendar for 2020 that will elevate and promote the park culture in Egypt, and in Cairo, specifically. The entertainment calendar kicked off in January with the bespoke Cairo Winter Wonderland. However, due to the current circumstances, many of the scheduled events in ZED had to be postponed to guarantee the safety of our community. A huge chunk of future up-coming events will be mainly focused on sports and entertainment. ZED is planning to host international paddle tennis and football events; and ultimately festivals, concerts and more.
What do you hope ZED’s impact will be on the real estate sector?
ZED will be known as the first development company to introduce the park-side living concept in Egypt. Projects like ZED Sheikh Zayed and ZED New Cairo will naturally boost the entire real estate sector.
What can we expect from ORA in the coming years?
As our tagline says, we are more than developers. We always dream big, embrace creativity, sustainability, innovation and harmony in every project we work on. We have a proven track record of creating beautiful environments that balance exceptional thinking with enduringly sensitive design in several markets, like London, Cyprus, Grenada, Pakistan and now Egypt. Ora’s developments are lifestyle destinations with a real sense of community spirit, bringing opportunity for all and offering a wide range of enjoyable lifestyle experiences. This is what we hope to bring in next few years.