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Tarek Nizameddin, CEO of AG Facilities Solutions, plans to guide the firm through new transformational changes

09 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

In a new interview with Facilities Management Middle East, Tarek Nizameddin, CEO of AG Facilities Solutions, speaks about his planned transformational changes for Al Ghurair Facilities.

Tarek Nizameddin, CEO of AG Facilities Solutions, plans to guide the firm through new transformational changes
Thursday 09 June 2022

09 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

In a new interview with Facilities Management Middle East, Tarek Nizameddin, CEO of AG Facilities Solutions, speaks about his planned transformational changes for Al Ghurair Facilities.

There is a new sheriff in town! Tarek Nizameddin joined as the new CEO of AG Facilities Solutions (AGFS), in January this year, prompting exciting new transformational changes across AGFS’ structure and operations. With more than 27 years of experience, Nizameddin brings with him a plethora of knowledge to navigate and embed change. He will be responsible for providing strategic direction and leadership to drive the transformation at AGFS.

Talking about AGFS, Nizameddin says: “We have a very large operation today. We have around 11,000 employees all over the UAE providing both hard and soft services. We are operating in seven emirates servicing a diverse range of sectors.”

These sectors include oil and gas, education, healthcare, retail, residential and commercial, shopping malls, and infrastructure projects, wherein AGFS provides, integrated facilities management (IFM) services, landscaping, pest control, and cleaning that includes facade cleaning and duct cleaning.

Nizameddin’s mandate is to build upon the success of AGFS and take it to the “next level”. He explains: “We are operating currently under two brands. One is a pure soft services firm called MBM. The second is AG Facilities Solutions that is focused on IFM and hard services. I’m in the process of integrating these two companies, merging the operations under one brand which will be launched soon as AG Facilities Solutions. With this approach, we form one solid brand that will provide a one-stop-shop solution to our clients.”

Explaining the rationale behind this, Nizameddin says that it is always better for clients to have a single, holistic provider, bringing greater quality control and increasing efficiency for AGFS’ operations and its clients. He adds: “This is what integrated facilities management is about. Clients don’t like to coordinate with different people for both soft and hard services.”

For such a transformation, the company is working on identifying SOP’s and processes for the addition of new systems. The firm is upgrading its own computer-aided facilities management (CAFM) systems. He adds: “We are integrating many systems such as time and attendance for HRMS. We have a full digital transformation plan that will be completed before the end of the year.”

In a nutshell, Nizameddin says that the company plans to offer multiple options to its clients that includes IoT and robotics. The firm has started business incubators to provide new in-house specialised services, which is currently outsourced by the firm. The company also plans to enter new segments, such as waste management. Nizameddin says: “The goal is to bring all this under one umbrella. Our purpose is ‘Empowering Facilities, Enhancing Life’. We are a purpose-driven organisation and this is our core focus.”

Explaining a bit more, Nizameddin says: “When we say empowering facilities, it doesn’t mean that I am empowering the AC system. It’s empowering everything including the facility manager, the client, my cleaners, technicians, and security guards. Everything is one interconnected ecosystem that provides a great experience for the building occupant. We are empowering and enhancing the life of everybody; enhancing the life of the building users, enhancing the life of investors, enhancing the lives of our employees by providing them with the proper welfare and proper employment working conditions; and we are enhancing the lives of our suppliers, by paying them on time and having a fair contract with them. This is our purpose.”

Employee welfare and cultural transformation

Talking about the firm’s commitment when it comes to employee welfare, Nizameddin says that one of the firm’s objectives for 2025 is to be one of the top employers in the region.
In parallel, there is a cultural transformation underway at AGFS which will help the firm achieve its corporate strategy, purpose, and goals.

AGFS calls itself a great company that aims to be even better. Nizameddin implies that the company needs “to be fit for the future”. And that can only come when all the moving parts are in line with each other. “Be it culture, welfare, technology, purpose of the organisation, they all need to aligned and such a strategy which will help AGFS achieve its goals”.

He adds that the firm believes in cultural diversity and empowerment of women. Nizameddin says: “We hope to see more and more women coming into play in the FM industry, and that’s something we are already proud to be championing in our own operations. We have a lot of senior women in leading roles at our organisation.”

The other purpose of rebranding is to align AGFS with the parent company, Al Ghurair Investment, a 60-year-old family-owned group of businesses, revered for being part of the infrastructure of the UAE since its founding days. AGFS intends to build upon that legacy.

Challenges

On the subject of competition in the market, Nizameddin says that it “is one of the challenges in the industry today”. He adds: “Everything is price sensitive and everybody is focusing on the cost. This has been an issue even before the pandemic, but I believe that with time clients will understand that FM is an investment and they have to invest at selecting the right partner, with the right capabilities, to support them. Clients need an FM service provider to provide them the right support for the sustainability of their operations, and at the same time, to maintain their asset lifecycle. We’re targeting these type of conscious clients: those that understand the importance of selecting the right partner with a balance between the cost and that added value that’s provided.”

The other challenge is that the FM industry still doesn’t receive the due recognition that it deserves. FM is still considered as a cost-center, when actually it is an “investment”. A good FM service partner can help you enhance the return on your assets to a very large extent, Nizameddin implies. That is something which is AGFS’ core deliverable.

Nizameddin says: “We bring that professionalism, technology, and the right systems into helping our clients manage facilities better but also enhance the facilities and the lifecycle cost. Operational Maintenance cost vary from 40-60% of the whole life cycle cost of a building and the right FM partner can help in improving the ROI.”

The last obvious challenge facing the firm is change management. Nizameddin concludes: “Change management is always a demanding. We are undertaking a huge transformation and we have people who have spent over 30 years working with us. It is a big challenge, especially when it comes to transforming from a traditional FM company to not just an integrated facility management company but also integrating the services across various functions. But we have a very strong team, and I am confident we will see through these positive changes.”

Read the article in its original location here: https://www.fm-middleeast.com/business/tarek-nizameddin-ceo-of-ag-facilitiessolutions-plans-to-guide-the-firmthrough-new-transformational-changes

SPRINGFIELD OPENS DOORS TO A SUSTAINABLE FLAGSHIP CONCEPT STORE

07 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

  • The new store, located in City Centre Mirdif, features latest, more sustainable garments from the Spring-Summer 2022 Collection
SPRINGFIELD OPENS DOORS TO A SUSTAINABLE FLAGSHIP CONCEPT STORE
Wednesday 08 June 2022

07 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

  • The new store, located in City Centre Mirdif, features latest, more sustainable garments from the Spring-Summer 2022 Collection
  • 2 out of every 3 garments is R[eco]nsider, a project through which the brand contributes to move towards a more sustainable production.

  • The store also features a unique tree installation and a vertical green wall to bring nature indoors

Stay ahead of the style game this summer with SPRINGFIELD! The casual wear brand has opened doors to its new flagship concept store in City Centre Mirdif, in a prime ground-floor location.

The revamped store features a unique design aesthetic, embracing nature and the environment, to create a tranquil ambience that brings the outdoors indoors. Developed with sustainability at its core, the theme of the striking 200sqm+ retail space is inspired by Springfield’s iconic tree logo.

The new store breathes promise into the brands’ environmental concern with most of the visual materials sourced from suppliers certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, the leading global authority responsible for forest management, conservation and preservation worldwide.

With the new fashion season just around the corner, the store also unveils the latest Spring / Summer 2022 Collection, for both men and women. The new range features versatile pieces across its different categories – denims, ICONS and linens, to name a few. The brand is committed to contribute to building a better future by manufacturing garments that are more sustainable, whether it be by using organic or recycled raw materials or technologies that save water, energy, and chemicals in the garment finishing processes.

Springfield clothing is designed to last – in both durability and style. The latest collections are conceived to transcend from season to season, including wardrobe staples that are versatile and wearable, from polo t-shirts to jeans and dresses.

Springfield launched an initiative in 2020 to reforest and create new ecosystems in the brand’s native Spain, aimed at improving air quality. To date, 90,000 trees have been planted as a result of the initiative. Now, as Springfield embeds deeper roots in the Middle East, it turns its sights to making a positive impact on the region’s environment.

Speaking about the launch, Anuradha Dhawan, General Manager, Al Ghurair Retail, comments, “The launch of this flagship store is an exciting moment for the UAE’s fashion scene, as we start to see a noticeable shift in consumer trends towards sustainable choices. We are proud to be at the forefront of responding to this change, providing increasingly eco-conscious shoppers with a wider choice of responsible options.

We take our commitment to the environment seriously and we want to make a positive impact for generations to come. With the launch of this concept store, we are building deeper roots in the region, and have many exciting environmental initiatives in the pipeline. We hope that our customers and brand enthusiasts will take part in these projects, as we become advocates for regional sustainability.

Our approach is simple: whenever you can, use what you already have, but when you need to buy, buy better. Better for the planet, better for you!”

To view the latest collections, you can visit: https://myspringfield.com/es/en.

Get Social with us: @Springfield_Me

Our sincere congratulations to Dr Arturo Lujan

02 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

Our sincere congratulations to Dr Arturo Lujan, CEO of Al Ghurair Ventures, on being presented his Doctorate Degree last week! Awarded in recognition of his extensive commitment to business transformation and community impact, the Council of Doctors voted unanimously for Dr Arturo to receive this prestigious distinction of Doctorate Honoris Causa in the historic house of knowledge, Ateneo of Madrid, in Spain.

Our sincere congratulations to Dr Arturo Lujan
Thursday 02 June 2022

02 June 2022, Dubai, UAE:

Our sincere congratulations to Dr Arturo Lujan, CEO of Al Ghurair Ventures, on being presented his Doctorate Degree last week! Awarded in recognition of his extensive commitment to business transformation and community impact, the Council of Doctors voted unanimously for Dr Arturo to receive this prestigious distinction of Doctorate Honoris Causa in the historic house of knowledge, Ateneo of Madrid, in Spain.

Arturo comments: “My first words must express my immeasurable gratitude to the Council of Doctors for this generous accolade. My humble thanks must also extend to my family, and my professors and classmates in both Wharton School of Business and Harvard Business School, for nurturing my passion for lifelong learning. I am honoured to receive this recognition, and proud to stand amongst my esteemed and accomplished colleagues in Al Ghurair Investment, in Dubai, UAE.”

During his decades-long career, Arturo has held transformational leadership roles across five continents, driving change, innovation and sustainable impact. In each of Arturo’s leadership roles, he has successfully transformed businesses into financially successful, people-centric and community-driven companies, admired by customers and recognised amongst the Top 10 Best Places to Work in their respective countries.

Arturo continues: “It’s my intrinsic belief that, for those of us who have a calling for business, we have a privileged opportunity to make a bigger impact. Financial results are not the only measures of a successful company: we must also consider the experience of our customers, the happiness of our people, the impact we make on the communities we serve, as well as the world we are leaving behind for future generations. Hence, we can, and should, do Good, whilst also doing Well.

The opportunity to learn never ends; I look forward to continuing both my own educational and professional journey, and to encourage others with their own journeys to become the best versions of themselves – from my family, to my team, to my peers and friends in Al Ghurair Investment. Knowledge is a meaningful gift, and one that should be shared generously, to allow ideas, minds and people to flourish!”

Congratulations Dr Arturo Lujan – from all of us in Al Ghurair!

Spotlight on… our digital transformation!

27 May 2022, Dubai, UAE:

Our transformation journey is about coming together, working towards a shared Purpose, celebrating our legacy, and collectively reshaping the future of Al Ghurair. With change all round us, every day, it’s important that we don’t miss milestones along the way, and that we look outside our own teams and departments to see how others are championing and enabling our journey.

Spotlight on… our digital transformation!
Thursday 02 June 2022

27 May 2022, Dubai, UAE:

Our transformation journey is about coming together, working towards a shared Purpose, celebrating our legacy, and collectively reshaping the future of Al Ghurair. With change all round us, every day, it’s important that we don’t miss milestones along the way, and that we look outside our own teams and departments to see how others are championing and enabling our journey.

Our new ‘Spotlight’ series aims to shine a light on transformation highlights, across the business. Each edition will feature a different team or colleague, showcasing progressive action, innovation and Purpose-led progress!

Take a look at the first edition in our ‘Spotlight’ series below:

AWS “Working Backwards” Workshop

With an aim to lead in a transforming world, we are constantly looking to adopt new ways of driving innovation across our businesses at Al Ghurair. To become fit for future and with continuous growth - we must be agile in our thinking and dexterous in our use of technology and data.

There are so many innovation / design thinking approaches and methodologies available, and teams in Al Ghurair Foods and Resources and Group IT were recently privileged to experience the Amazonian way of doing things! Who better to learn from than this technology leader with successes such as Amazon Prime, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Amazon Kindle, and Amazon Echo and Alexa?

Our teams from Foods and Resources, together with Group IT, were honoured to host a workshop with the global AWS team and to learn first-hand knowledge of the Amazon distinctive customer-centric approach to innovation. The Amazonian way places the core focus on the end customer, considering their needs, desires and preferences first, and ‘working backwards’ from there! 

The ‘Working Backwards’ Workshop challenged the attendees at the start of the day as the methodology requires a mindset shift from certain ‘norms’. By the end of session, the workshop delivered highly innovative and creative outputs - and a transformed team! The key takeaway from the session was understanding the fundamental power of changing the focus from an internal approach, to putting ourselves in the customers’ shoes to “experience”.

Djamal Djouhri, CEO of Al Ghurair Foods and AGROP, along with his full management team, together with Marinda Sheahan, Group Vice President, IT and team, were taken through the structured approach over 1.5 days, guided and challenged by our AWS facilitator, to produce what can only be described as a ground-breaking outcome!

Speaking about the session, Djamal commented:

“It was a great pleasure to work with the AWS team and go through this exercise. Indeed, a fruitful one, thank for your leadership, coaching, guiding, and motivating the team. Even the reluctant ones in the beginning found the process, and the outcome, just superb!”