Aschraf Mahmud, financial expert: The real estate sector in the UAE has always been the focus of attention for investors
First of all, would you give us an overview of your professional and personal life?
I am of Palestinian origin. I had lived in Bonn, the former capital of Germany, where I grew up and raised with my Arab parents. Our life as Arabic family was typical. And, I came (migrate) to the West, here in Germany, in a bid to establish a stable life. Initially, my father insisted on enrolling me in primary education school at King Fahad Academy, may Allah be merciful to him. It had had a strong impact on my current personality formation. In fact, despite our involvement in German society, we, as a family, have preserved our Arab identity, mother tongue and culture that we all cherish.
For two years, I had joined military services in German army. Then, I got started with my university studies where I obtained my bachelor’s degree in Business Administration as well as Financial and Accountancy Systems. I acquired several experiences in money and business sphere. Most of them were small-scale enterprises that swung between success and failure.
However, the most significant and successful experience that bloomed my career was in spare parts motorcycle trading, in Bonn. At first, when I found high demand in many unavailable products of certain spare parts in the market, I started to buy motorcycles, dismantle them to be finally sold as parts. This experience, indeed, was the backbone of my success in money and business. It shed lighted my true love to the world of trading as I found out that I am passionately fond of trading, buying and selling and making successful deals in business.
What are the foundations used in financial analysis?
It goes without saying that financial analysis is created to identify, measure, and determine the financial health of the establishments, companies and institutions, as well as taking feasible decisions or anything that help to increase productivity in a company or establishment.
As it is customary, the foundations of financial analysis that I count on are: first, knowing the financial structure of an entity or institution. Second, funding sources. Third, fixed asset and so on. Also, it is about the operating cycle of the establishment, and then knowing the directions – the so-called trends- taken by the institution for its productivity over span of years, the flexibility and the way it deals with unexpected events. The perfect example is when the entire world shockingly went through the spread of the pandemic Coronavirus (Covid-19) and its consequent effects.
How do you assess the global financial and economic outlook for 2021?
Although human being is weak in flesh, God gives us an incredible brilliant mind. Here, it is worth noting that over the course of our life, the human being had undertaken outpouring of circumstances, tragedies and transformations. In addition, most of them were terribly unexpected and negative. But ultimately, the human mind had overcame these barriers by taking advantage on them by turning negative into positive. Today, the situation remains equal as we have been given new far more severe realty because of the worldwide spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19 ). It causes the biggest meltdown in history. What started as an epidemic has now become unprecedently global pandemic. This is a big moment when all governments around the globe announce task force made up of physicians and health experts. It tends to seek a science-based approach to bring the raging pandemic under control.
After all these difficulties, the whole world hears promising and effective vaccines found so far. Thus, and thanks to God, the human brain triumphs constantly over such hindrances. Hence, we need to think outside the box as we live in a fast-changing world, where innovation and improvement keep growing and developing in no time. Indeed, It is all about turning curses into blessings, and embracing both adaptability and flexibility in a world of constant change. I am not going to talk about upcoming financial upheaval, merely because I insist on the capability of our mind over numerous crisis.
How do you evaluate the local real estate in the UAE? Do you monitor any healthy indicators in a short run?
Due to many factors, the real estate in UAE has always come into the focus of attention for investors: first, being on the top world list in security and stability. Second, clear and unbiased fact of the rules and regulations of the country. Third, investment promotion and facilitation by the removal obstacles whether in property or in other field. Nowadays, the UAE is the ideal investment destination for investors in all different sectors. Accordingly, these elements make us strongly believe that the business future is promising on short, medium, and long terms, specifically in the property field through mega deals and small ones too.
Any tips for first-time investors?
The things to take in mind before they take a leap are: Seize the opportunity and get to know the marked movement of supply and demand, before investing in real estate.
Do not copy what others do. Get into smart way to grow your investment, come up with innovative solutions, not problems.
Moreover, to search for authentic and real-life difficulties that people face everyday. Finally, to offer people feasible remedies for a profit. This is the essence of trade.
Have you anything further to say?
I want to express my thanks for the advantageous interview. My thanks go to the UAE authorities for their unconditional support, to Emirati Sheikhs and people for what they have done to facilitate investment process. I appreciate their warm welcome and their usefulness in helping us, as investors and businessmen. May Allah almighty bless the country, people and Sheikhs and their future with safe, stable condition, goodness and prosperity.