ARADA has arranged an Islamic syndicated loan of AED1 billion (US$ 274m) as financing for its the 24 million square foot master-planned community development, Aljada. The property developer’s finance facility was arranged by Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) and Dubai Islamic Bank as joint-lead arrangers and bookrunners. ARADA was formed in early 2017 as a joint-venture between KBW Investments and Basma Group.
Announced in September, Aljada is one of Sharjah’s biggest ever mixed-use real estate developments and is expected to have a sales value of AED24 billion (US$6.5b). Located next to Sharjah University City, the project is set to develop the last major plot of undeveloped land in Sharjah city.
Construction on Aljada will begin during the first quarter of 2018 and ARADA expects to begin delivering properties in phases beginning 2019. The entire master-planned community is expected to be completed by 2025. According to ARADA, the residential development has already become one of Sharjah’s fastest-selling, with 115 homes in Aljada’s Areej 5 apartment block being sold on the day that they were released.
Properties in Aljada are being made available to Emirati, GCC and UAE expatriate investors, as per Sharjah’s 2014 property law. Property laws now allow foreign expatriates living in the United Arab Emirates to acquire Sharjah property in approved zones via 100 year leasehold agreements.
Sharjah’s real estate market has experienced strong growth in recent years, supported by increasing demand for mid- to high-end residential properties and changes to the emirate’s property law. Sharjah registered 23 percent growth in the number of residential sales transactions during the first half of this year (SRERD) and rising demand has pushed Sharjah villa rental prices up by 11.7 percent during January to July (Cluttons).