Author Archives: Zak Brophy

Searching for security

Searching for security

The cataclysmic crash in global financial markets in 2008 was a smack in the face with a wet fish for both bankers and investors alike. A new reality emerged in its wake: gone were the days of carefree flurries into magnificently low-risk and high-return financial products fueled by seemingly boundless levels of borrowing. After a

Q&A – Vrej Sabounjian

The new Minister of Industry, Vrej Sabounjian, has made his mark in Lebanese business as the president and owner of the food service and laundry manufacturing firm, Vresso. Having just gotten his seat warm at the ministry following his appointment, Executive met with him to discuss his vision for the sector.  E:  Do you have any

Forging steel from ash

Toufic Dalal had spent 20 years building his firm into one of the largest steel manufacturers in the region, specializing in pre-engineered buildings and pre-fabricated houses. He had become a rare success story in Lebanon’s heavy industry sector. Then on 23 July, 2006, Israeli fighter jets left his factory a smoldering wreck of ash and

Back in flavor

Liban Lait had established itself as a leading competitor in the Lebanese dairy industry by the time bombs began to rain down in 2006. Considering it had only been formed in 1997, and built its own factory in 1999, the company was brimming with confidence.   But on July 17, 2006, two Israeli missiles demolished their

The state of industry, 2011

The industrial sector in Lebanon is often regarded as the runt of the economic litter. Real estate, tourism and banking receive the lion’s share of attention and praise, not to mention political support. Perusing the figures over the past five years showing the manufacturing sector’s inexorable decline in share of value added to gross domestic

Hospitality: Where everything is possible

  The job of a concierge in a five-star hotel is a portal into the stratospheric world of the super rich, a front-row view of how the ultra well-heeled live. Sometimes it is amusing, sometimes shocking and sometimes downright weird. When paying top buck for service, guests can, and often do, expect everything on a

Yachts: Leap of faith

Few displays of the luxurious lifestyle turn heads quite like a top-of-the range boat, and it is the colossal mega yachts that tend to elicit the most attention. These floating mansions can come custom furnished with swimming pools, helipads, indoor gyms and even mini submarines. But is size everything? For Alain Maaraoui, founder and chief