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Italian firm secures acquisition deal to clean Burj Khalifa

Burj Khalifa Creative Commons/Nealt
View from the top: as the world's tallest tower, Burj Khalifa is a coveted cleaning contract
  • EdiliziAcrobatica acquires 51% stake in Enigma Capital 
  • Dubai firm provides cleaning services for world’s tallest building
  • Trade between Italy and UAE up 15.5% in 2022

An Italian firm has bought a controlling stake in the company that cleans the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building in Dubai.

EdiliziAcrobatica has acquired 51 percent of the shares in Enigma Capital Investments in a deal initially worth 7.2 million Euros ($7.76 million).

As part of the agreement 70 percent (5 million Euros) will be paid up front with the remainder paid out if Enigma Capital reaches certain profit targets in 2023, the statement issued on Wednesday said.

Dubai-based holding company Enigma Capital operates across the Middle East in construction, providing rope access and cleaning services for residential and commercial buildings, as well as facility management services.

EdiliziAcrobatica, a leading company in Europe when it comes to building maintenance and renovation using double safety ropes, was founded in Genoa by Riccardo Iovino 29 years ago.

The latest acquisition will see it be responsible for cleaning the exterior of the Burj Khalifa, which stands at over 828 metres and has more than 160 stories.

“This is just the first step in the active, dynamic Arab and Middle Eastern markets,” said Iovino. 

“Our project to revolutionise the way construction is done throughout the world continues in the Middle East, but this will certainly not be our last stop.”

EdiliziAcrobatica has more than 2,100 employees, 400 of which are based in the UAE, with more than 120 operating sites in Italy, the UAE, France, Spain and the Principality of Monaco.

The UAE and Italy recently elevated relations to the level of a strategic partnership as the countries aim to build on growing trade figures seen last year.

Burj Khalifa
Burj Khalifa soars above other towers on the Dubai skyline. Picture: Creative Commons/PickPic

The partnership announcement was made in a meeting held earlier this month between UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in Abu Dhabi during her first visit to the country.

Under a “declaration of intent”, Italy is seeking closer collaboration on direct investment and partnerships in sectors including healthcare, food and water security, technology, defence, renewable energy, sports and education.

Trade between Italy and the UAE in the first 10 months of 2022 reached $7 billion, an increase of 15.5 percent on the previous year, according to the Italian Trade Agency.

“Our entry into the Middle East market is an extraordinary opportunity for mutual exchange between cultures,” said Anna Marras, shareholder and director with responsibility for human resources at EdiliziAcrobatica.

More than 600 Italian companies are currently operating in the Emirates, and Italy is the EU’s largest trading partner to the UAE. Its main exports are jewellery, machinery and agri-food.