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|| From a $550 Ad to $475m Annual Sales

We are not very keen on real estate news in Dubai; a bit bubbly and not quite entrepreneurial. But we found the FT feature on a Dubai/UK-based company selling off-plan properties quite interesting.

"I put a $550 advert in a Sunday newspaper and bought an answering machine. By Monday morning it was full of messages.” That’s how the young CEO, Mark Stott, 35, started his business Select Properties four years ago. Now he runs the company of 90 staff in his UK and Dubai offices. FT is saying they have sold $475 million worth of property last year.

Their techniques look interesting: Over 90% of the sales via print and web related promotional activities are conducted over the phone. They have got a portal for their buyers where they can check updates about their purchased property. The company has even ventured into a money business.

After selling almost 4,000 properties since 2004, last year he raised ~$19 million from private investors to fund the group's move into development. Now he owns 80 per cent of the business and is now the Director of Select Group chaired by Rahail Aslam.

… All starting from that $550 advert in a newspaper …

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