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Dubai’s Nakheel Plans 1,000 Villas to Boost Leasing Income

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July 1 (Bloomberg) -- Nakheel PJSC, developer of man-made islands off Dubai’s coast, plans to build 1,000 villas in the emirate to rent out as it seeks to boost recurring income, the company’s chairman said.

Construction is expected to start before the end of the year and the villas would take about 18 months to complete, Chairman Ali Rashed Lootah said in a June 29 interview, without disclosing the project’s location.

Nakheel, which drove Dubai near default in 2009, is concentrating on projects that provide regular revenue. The developer has announced plans to develop income-producing assets, including 2,900 hotel rooms in the next three years as well as 7.9 million square feet of shops, restaurants and leasing space.

“We are seeing a growing trend with developers starting to hold properties and lease them,” said Asjad Yahya, an analyst at Dubai-based investment bank Shuaa Capital. “The villa market has been relatively underserved and generally there is demand for it.”

Developers in the emirate such as Emaar Properties PJSC, owner of the world’s largest mall by area, have stayed away from residential leasing in favor of recurring income from hotels, retail and office space, Yahya said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zainab Fattah in Dubai at zfattah@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net Jeffrey St.Onge