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From a vision to reality: Hovig Yessayan’s journey as CEO of Yessayan Developments

BEIRUT | - May 22, 2014, 22h09
Par Laura Hamade
Hovig Yessayan, CEO of Yessayan Developments, gave us some insight on what to expect in the current real estate market. He shared with us how his vision became a reality as the CEO of this company and how he hopes to grow both personally and professionally.
“If I have an idea in mind, I just take a chance and go for it. I don’t like to wait for anything.”
- Hovig Yessayan, on what got him started in the real estate business

How long have you been in the real estate business?

I have been in this business since 2009. The first projects were Bsalim 1091, Bsalim 1090, Ashrafieh 474, and the Amethyst Mezher, respectively.

What is your opinion on the real estate market in Lebanon currently?

Currently, a lot of people say it is down and others say it is stable. There is always a lot of talk about the real estate market but it depends on what kinds of houses you are building, what location you choose to build in, and what size the apartments are. It’s an issue of trust. It’s an issue of completion, and design.

What can you tell us about the history of Yessayan Developments?

It started as an investment project with a couple of friends and it turned out to be a success so I decided to continue. Once I finished my first project, which was Bsalim 1091, I had to acquire additional land. It started out as a simple investment and turned out to be a reality for me. It was the new path I decided to take.

I wanted to diversify our family business and I found that I’ve always liked trading. I enjoy having something to sell, not services like restaurants. I want to sell a product, something in hand, so I decided on going with real estate.

What is it like being a CEO of a real estate development company?

Well, it’s hectic. It’s also interesting being able to manage it, considering my past experiences with my family’s business and my travels. I’ve always had the means for sales since I was young.

You mentioned earlier that you’re interested in offering smaller apartments? Why is that? Is it because people are now used to smaller spaces or is there a demand for smaller apartments now?

This is the market now. This is what people are currently demanding because this is all they can afford. Whatever they can afford, I’m going to give them. What they can’t afford, I cannot afford to build because they will not sell. I don’t want people to invest in my houses. The areas in which I built in the suburbs are not for investment purposes, they are solely for living.

What are your interests besides working with real estate and jewelry?

Gym, skiing, water skiing, soccer. I used to play on teams when I was younger but now I don’t have much time. I travel a lot. Both for business and for pleasure. When I travel for pleasure, I never go to the same destination twice. I like to see different parts of the world and experience adventures. I always like to see something new. My favorite places to travel so far are New York, Hong Kong and London. The Maldives are also very nice.
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