Qatar Project Management (QPM) was set up at the start of the global recession in 2008 and as such was not affected to the same degree as many firms in the construction sector. The timing of its creation also means that QPM is cautious in its approach, with the management keen to learn from the mistakes made by other companies during the 2003-08 boom years.
As a subsidiary of Barwa, one of the largest publicly listed real-estate firms in the region, and part-owned by Qatari Diyar, QPM has access to a strong pipeline of projects. This has provided a guaranteed backlog of work and a steady platform during its initial years.
QPM also has sound financial backing. Its parent companies Barwa and Qatari Diyar are owned by the Qatari government, which is supported by revenues from the sale of liquefied natural gas. Both firms are unlikely to run into similar debt problems experienced by state-backed real-estate developers in Dubai.
Qatar’s success in winning the right to host the World Cup in 2022 could not have come at a better time for QPM. Over the next 11 years, there will be a raft of projects across all sectors of the construction market.
The firm’s capacity to offer services for the whole life-cycle of a project means it will be able to work on different schemes that need to be completed as part of Qatar’s $60bn infrastructure spending plan. The World Cup will also give QPM an international platform to showcase its capabilities and range of services.
However, if QPM is to achieve its aim of becoming one of the world’s top five project management firms, it will need to move further beyond its home market. This will require the firm to take on considerably more risk and work on projects other than those being developed by its parent companies.
In the short-term, some of the firm’s projects risk being delayed by the political turmoil in the region. QPM has projects in Egypt, Libya, Yemen and Syria, all of which have been or continue to be affected by the protests.