China’s wealthiest man acquires historic Madrid building

REIDIN – Daily, BangkokMar 26, 2014

Wang Jianlin, who topped Forbes’ 2013 China Rich List, recently acquired a landmark building in Madrid for about EUR260 million (USD358.6 million).

The 117-metre Edificio España—once Europe’s tallest building—will be redeveloped into a mixed-use luxury hotel and shopping complex. It had been used as an office and apartment building, but the original plan for the 25-storey tower was for hospitality purposes.

Comunidad de Madrid president Ignacio Gonzalez, who announced the deal to the public, told Forbes that the transaction is “an important part of a recovery plan for the Spain Square area of Madrid—where the building is located.”

In 2006, previous owners Grupo Santander paid 33 percent more than Wang’s estimated acquisition price, but the Spanish bank failed to redevelop the property after facing a budget problem in 2007. The Edificio is widely considered a symbol of Spain’s property crisis by Madrid residents and politicians, according to Forbes.

Wang, who, according to Forbes is worth USD15.1 billion, purchased the property through his real estate firm Dalian Wanda, which operates 49 five-star hotels and hundreds of commercial properties in China. Wang is expanding his international property portfolio and has acquired other multimillion projects in the United States and India.

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Almost half of construction workers unhappy with their job

04/03/2014 14:03:51

A new survey has revealed that almost half of construction professionals are unhappy with their current job.

That’s according to research from, which took responses from 2,000 construction, engineering and built environment professionals.

It was discovered that 47 per cent of industry professionals were looking to leave their current employer at some point in 2014.

Furthermore, the study revealed just nine per cent of workers had any intention of being in the same job by the end of year.

This will see a number of skilled workers hitting the jobs market in 2014 to find the ideal position to suit their ambitions.

Some 58 per cent cited salary reasons for the desire to change, with this group believing they are deserving of a larger pay packet. Additionally, 60 per cent of respondents said they were unhappy with the benefits package on offer from their current employer.

According to the research, only 21 per cent of workers in building services are on £15,000 or less a year, while the industry average stands at £38,625.

Rob Searle, commercial director for, said jobseekers are “clearly eager” for choice when it comes to construction jobs in 2014.

“As industry confidence grows, the desire for change will build so we expect to see a lot of switching in 2014. Employers will need to work harder than ever to retain their talent, as jobseekers consider locations abroad and at home which offer bolstered remuneration packages,” he continued.

The construction industry has seen a number of positives in recent months, with increased workloads and available employment being seen as a result of the improving economic environment.

This could lead to workers being more selective about their jobs and checking the market to see what is available.

Many are even looking abroad for their next opportunity, with America proving to offer workers great rewards. Some 71 per cent of those who work across the pond take home £50,000 or more.

Unsurprisingly, it is London that has the highest paid construction workers, with 20 per cent earning £50,000 or more a year.

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