Thursday, 21 May 2009

Mixed response to Hydra investor meeting

From 20 May 09
Concerned Hydra Properties investors met with the company’s chairman on Wednesday but stopped short of saying it had been a success.

Sulaiman Al Fahim, the boss of Abu Dhabi-based developer Hydra Properties, met with investors to iron out a protracted dispute over imposed unit price hikes and construction delays on the company’s projects.

During the meeting Hydra Investors Group, which is made up of 185 disgruntled property buyers, called for the developer to stop demanding payments on its flagship project Hydra Village until they had received assurances the project will be completed.

Karl Howard, co-chair of the investors group, said: “The issue we are facing is investor confidence about the company situation and how much progress they have made. If they could give people that assurance it would be built and the contract wasn’t so one sided, then the problems would largely go away.”

The meetings were prompted following a live Q&A session with Dr Fahim on Arabian last week.

However, Al Fahim was more upbeat. “We’re seeing every single person who is unhappy to see what we can do. Talk to them yourself and find out the outcomes, so far we have been able to help a lot of investors. I think it is positive news,” he told Arabian Business.

One investor, Tyronne Pires, was allowed to exchange his AED1.7m one bedroom apartment at Hydra Twin Towers in Dubai for a two bedroom AED1.3m townhouse in Abu Dhabi’s Hydra Village.

“I’ve reduced my liability and exposure- frankly it’s amazing. Hats off to the guy (Al Fahim). He sat with me, he listened, he gave me options.”“Emaar and Nakheel would never have sent anyone to meet you,” Indian born Pires, who has lived in Dubai for 23 years, added.

On Tuesday the developer issued a legal notice to investors at Hydra Village threatening to reacquire units if outstanding payments were not paid.

According to reports the letter states that payments made on properties including the purchase reservation and all installments shall be forfeited if investors fail to pay the remaining amount owed.

Hydra commercial director Ahmed Khalil confirmed legal notices had been sent to a handful of defaulting investors.

Hydra Village, a large residential community development in Abu Dhabi, has been delayed by two years and is due for completion in 2011

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