Ford to drive Farnek’s diverse FM business growth strategy to support new corporate structure


UAE-based total FM company makes senior appointments amid company restructure with new dedicated revenue streams for technology, sustainability and hospitality   

Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Leading UAE-based smart and green facilities management (FM) company Farnek has promoted UK National Derek Ford, to Senior Director of Business Development (BD) and Key Accounts. 

Ford, who joined Farnek in 2016 as a project director of total FM services, has a wealth of experience, including a 23-year career as an engineer in the British Army, with posts in Germany and Oman.

Reporting directly to CEO, Markus Oberlin, Ford’s new responsibilities include aligning BD with corporate strategy, directing all sales activities including diversifying into new business sectors, managing key accounts and JV contracts, leading, motivating, and developing the BD team, improving efficiency and quality management, as well as revenue accountability.

“Derek has been directing our Total Facilities Management (TFM) and Hard Facilities Management (HFM) service teams on key projects including Expo 2020, Burj Khalifa, Dubai Fountains, the Dubai Mall and Dubai Airport. His exemplary engineering qualifications and in-depth knowledge of managing complex facilities made him the outstanding candidate to direct our business development strategy,” said Markus Oberlin, CEO, Farnek.

 After a distinguished career in the British Army, in 2012, Ford was handed responsibility as a consultant technical officer by the NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA), to oversee multiple operational and maintenance contracts for infrastructure and technical airfield facilities and the delivery of MEP and infrastructure contracts for multinational agencies, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. 

After a brief training project for PDO in Oman, Ford returned to Kandahar in 2014, at the request of the NSPA, as a lead engineer and senior technical officer, to manage the airfield engineering department, offering strategic engineering and operational advice 

In 2016, Ford was appointed director of FM management contracts at Dubai’s City Walk, where he was responsible for mobilising and delivering FM services for the mixed-use complex, consisting of retail, F&B outlets, leisure and entertainment, the master community and residential units. More recently, he was project director of the Burj Khalifa, responsible for the delivery of HFM services and the day-to-day management of a multi-disciplined FM team. 

“The UAE FM market is not only intensely competitive, but it is also becoming increasingly multifaceted, with technological advances, combined with demand for environmentally friendly operations.

“Farnek has invested more than one million dollars developing technologies that are innovative and impactful, offering smart and sustainable solutions with a Net Zero plan powered by cloud, mobility, IoT and AI platforms. This is the future of FM and I am looking forward to playing an integral role in the development of a market proposition, fit for smart cities,” commented Ford. 

Farnek’s new corporate structure also includes a number of other senior appointments to boost the company’s presence particularly in Abu Dhabi and the Northern Emirates, as well as within its residential maintenance company, Hitches & Glitches. 

“Besides growing demand for technology and sustainability, market verticals are diverging as well, so we have restructured our organisation, creating dedicated business units, such as HITEK (technology and innovation) and Trendz (hospitality management) to address these challenges and to capitalise on the inevitable opportunities that lie ahead,” added Oberlin. 

About Farnek:

Farnek is the leading provider of sustainable and technology-driven Facilities Management in the United Arab Emirates. Established in the UAE since 1980, Farnek Services LLC is a Swiss-owned independent total facilities management company. 

With a skilled workforce of more than 8,000 employees, Farnek delivers professional Facilities Management and security services across several sectors; Aviation, Hospitality, Banking, Retail, Shopping Malls, Telecom, Residential, Commercial, Infrastructure, Government, Education, Leisure and Entertainment.