International Ceramics City (ICC), a new development in the Jebel Ali Industrial Zone, on Tuesday signed an agreement with its first tenants, RAK Ceramics.
RAK Ceramics, the world's largest ceramic tiles and bathware manufacturing company, signed an agreement with ICC to open a 5,200 square foot showroom, one of the largest office spaces at ICC with an option to add another 5,000 square feet.
"ICC will serve as an important venue to bring us closer to our customers and to strengthen our market stronghold," said Abdullah Massaad, deputy CEO of RAK Ceramics.
ICC caters to companies dealing in ceramic building materials and related products. With total investments of $120 million (Dh440 million), the development encompasses 400,000 square feet.
Article continues below
Three firms in pipeline
According to Naseer Ahmad, CEO of ICC, the zone is expecting 75 to 125 companies from 8 to 10 countries to set up shop at ICC.
"We are looking at achieving 30 to 40 per cent occupancy by the end of this year and another 30 to 40 per cent by mid-2012. We're hoping that by Dec-ember we'll be close to or exceeding 100 per cent," said Tolani Ramesh, managing director of Al Rashid Investments.
"There are three companies almost in the process of signing off and we are in discussion with them," he added.
According to Ramesh, they are holding back on marketing the project as they want to complete the buildings before offering space to tenants.
"We wanted to finished our project, for people to come and see and feel it and then we would start leasing the project. We have actively informed quite a lot of customers. They are aware of the project. They are all being lined up so they can come and see the facility closer to the completion date," Ramesh told Gulf News.
They are looking to start handovers by the first week of September.
Fit-out periods are estimated to take three to four months so the opening dates of individual tenants will take place between the last week of November to December.
The development aims to attract buyers not only from the UAE but from the whole Menasa region.
"India will be a huge market and Africa besides the political turmoil in some of these countries is going to become a big opportunity as well," said Ahmad.
The city will also play a part in boosting Dubai's economy.
"Dubai will benefit from it because the projects in Dubai will have a better destination to procure these products," said Ahmad.