• Kabir Mulchandani

    Uncompromising, powerful, visionary businessman

An Upbringing Fuelled By Conversations About Business

Having grown up in an entrepreneurial household in India, Kabir’s upbringing was fueled by conversations about business, money, and taxation. His father, a creative, spearheaded an electronics legacy business and his mother, a strong entrepreneur established a well renowned embroidery business. This experience laid the foundations for Kabir’s uncompromising attitude towards business that you ‘never stop’ and it is not ‘the most talented or the most intelligent that succeed but the most persevering’ . These words of wisdom have certainly served him well.

Kabir Mulchandani credits his elegance under pressure and ability to control a conversation to his time spent studying in the US at Phillips Exeter Academy as a teen. The Harkness method of education used at Phillips Exeter focused on a collaborative environment of learning through discussion and debate whilst sitting at a round table. He described this experience as challenging yet very valuable.

Early Days of Entrepreneurship

Kabir held a bet with his mother that he would be admitted into three top universities and in return, she would buy him a gift. He won, got the gift and went to study at Stanford University in the US. A call from his mother in 1993, requested Kabir Mulchandani return to India after just one year into his degree. His parents had requested his return to help with the family electronics business, Baron International. His mother had provided the capital to save the business, entrusting 20-year-old Kabir to watch over her investment and make the changes necessary for Baron International to thrive.

With the allure of 250 million potential consumers in India, Kabir Mulchandani adapted the business model to assemble and sell televisions in India outselling his rivals with a 46% return on capital employed. To put this into perspective, whilst household names like Sony, Samsung and Phillips were losing money in India, a young Kabir was able to take the business from $5m to $250m revenue in just 4 years. To achieve such a feat, Kabir held the fundamental belief that “I must convince consumers my product provides them the best return on investment versus not just other televisions, but computers, fridges and even shares and bonds, that said product is an investment and not a wasteful indulgence” .

Kabir’s journey as a powerful visionary was ignited. He used his marketing knowledge and was ahead of his time by focusing on value over price . Instead of dramatically reducing price, he used promotions like free complimentary goods and the offer to trade in an older device (which was then sold into rural communities). With intimate knowledge of Indian communities, he had noted that even wealthy Indians like his mother would hold onto working televisions, however decrepit, but might trade it in for the offer of a new one! Needless to say, it worked.

A Move Into Real Estate

After selling the consumer electronics business in Mumbai, and a challenging decade, Kabir had considered a move to London or New York, but it was a last minute trip to Dubai where Kabir fell in love with the vibrancy and entrepreneurial energy of the growing destination. Led by the offer of a “tremendous lifestyle, security, and great financial planning on a larger scale” and attracted to the diversity, moving to Dubai felt right. He said “The beauty is that you have 180 nationalities, probably every different religion, living in peace. Everyone is coming here to collaborate and create. You are in a sense someone who wants to achieve more, you are looking for opportunity. And when you put this diversity and this mindset together you are going to create something powerful”.

The successful development and subsequent sale of Baron International led to Kabir taking a step into real estate development by launching his next venture, Dynasty Zarooni. He invested $7m (25m aed) into three projects – Jumeirah Business Centre, Hydra Square Tower and Marina Square – which were all acquired off-plan. Kabir’s business savvy edge led to him acquiring the projects at a bulk discount enabling him to 10X (225m aed) his investment by reselling the projects to investors.

The expansion was not without complications. As may be expected for a businessman of his ilk Kabir has unfortunately had to contend with issues pertaining to litigation. However, this was taken to the extreme when in 2009 he was unfairly detained in custody for 140 days due to erroneous claims of fraud by a disgruntled group of individuals. The case went to the Supreme Court of Dubai and a judgement was received in Kabir’s favour which found the case was ‘baseless and without evidence’. This unfortunate situation dented Kabir’s public reputation and the threat of 29 years imprisonment for something he did not do was, of course, a sad potential outcome of unsubstantiated and malicious claims. However, upon being acquitted in 2010, Kabir now looks upon those 140 days as one of the best years of his life. That time of reflection and uncertainty reinstated his focus and determination to ensure FIVE would become a resounding success.

  • 1972


  • 1992

    Stanford University


  • 1993

    Baron International

  • 2011

    SKAI Real Estate


  • 2017

    FIVE Hotels and Resorts

SKAI Holdings

Restructuring Dynasty Zarooni and investing $50m (183m aed) into a new brand, SKAI Holdings, in 2011, Kabir Mulchandani and his team focussed on the acquisition of underdeveloped and distressed real estate projects including four residencies and the venture into hospitality with FIVE Palm Jumeirah.

SKAI Holdings was rebranded as FIVE in 2017 with an investment of $626m (2.3 billion aed). FIVE was born as a vertically integrated, hospitality led real estate development group. FIVE Global Holdings is a major global enterprise that offers four exciting hotels, a music label and an airline.

In December 2021 HL valued the group, FIVE Global Holdings, at $2.5billion USD.

FIVE Hotels and Resorts

Hotels are a major component of his business and each one is unique. Each property is modern and stylish with incredible amenities and excellent service.

FIVE Palm Jumeirah offers contemporary elegance on Dubai’s iconic palm-shaped island, while FIVE Jumeirah Village provides modern luxury in the centre of Dubai. The newest venture FIVE Zurich boasts luxurious hospitality and is set in the heart of Switzerland’s largest city, Zurich.

In 2023 the launch of FIVE LUXE will be realised – a beach front location built with sustainability at the forefront. The latest FIVE project takes the company’s mantra ‘sustainability without compromise’ to new heights through the incorporation of sleek and sophisticated sustainable technologies embedded within FIVE’s most opulent hotel yet.

FIVE’s hotel operations have many accolades including FIVE Jumeirah Village being the most reviewed hotel in the world with over 36,000 reviews on Booking.com, and FIVE being the most successful hospitality company in a post-COVID period due to the brands ability to adapt their business model by offering special long stay options to incentivise guests to stay at the hotels during this period.   FIVE is searched for on Google 510% more than other comparable luxury brands which attests to Kabir’s ability to build a coveted brand.

You won’t find any other hotels like them as they continue to innovate and deliver first-class experiences for their guests. Kabir Mulchandani’s unique approach is exactly why the brand continues to thrive. “Our culture is based on hiring people who love people. We ask the question, ‘What do we as consumers want to feel?’ because once you are providing value, there is money to be made. Guests will keep coming back.”

FIVE Jumeirah Village
Kabir Mulchanda investments
Five Zurich

Beyond Hospitality

The FIVE brand that Kabir has created is synonymous with first class entertainment experiences from world class nightclubs, celebrity performances and album launches. Kabir’s uncompromising attitude to offering his stakeholders the very best doesn’t stop at great rooms and culinary delights. Kabir has curated a culture with music at its core, 360-degree customer service and an ‘everything under one roof’ style of hospitality. FIVE has truly established itself as the ultimate lifestyle and party destination in Dubai. Having hosted thousands of events and hundreds of top DJs, FIVE has welcomed almost 5 million guests hailing from almost every country in the world. The brand is characterised by a robust weekly events calendar across the property portfolio with signature events such as ‘Bohemia’, ‘Naughty Noodles’, ‘Secret Ladies Day’ and ‘Bling’ to name a few. This schedule is enriched by a plethora of well renowned artists and world famous DJs like Lost Frequencies, Fatman Scoop, Mark Knight and Calum Scott. Making the FIVE family a home for a range of celebrities from all around the world including Davido, Arturo Vidal, KSI, Floyd Mayweather, Tyson Fury etc.

FIVE Music

A natural progression for a brand so well regarded for entertainment is FIVE Music, which is aimed at delivering the ultimate experience for music fans.

The ability to produce and release hand-crafted FIVE-star tunes from superstar DJs captures the energy of the Vibe at FIVE. FIVE continually build lasting relationships with global and local musicians by providing best-in-class spaces, like The Penthouse, for performances.  Kabir Mulchandani and his co-founding member (and CEO) Aloki Batra are the driving force behind the Musical DNA at FIVE. They utilise cutting-edge experiential software to provide a high quality and vibrant experience across the brand coupled with world-famous artists – it’s a winning combination!


As a frequent traveller, Kabir wanted to bring the energy of FIVE hospitality and commit it to the air by providing a ‘best in sky-high travel’ experience with the Fly FIVE business and entertainment jet. Fly FIVE provides clients with the opportunity to relax and reinvigorate in an opulent environment thousands of miles from anything else. The 16-seater jet is the perfect way to provide guests with in-air luxury. It is the pinnacle of air travel for those looking for a glamorous getaway or an unforgettable music experience.

This one of a king space is FIVE Hotel and Resorts newest home in the sky, including

  • 12 hour non stop travel time
  • Dining table for 8 people
  • Master suite with king size bed
  • Full LED lighting
  • Fully equipped kitchen
  • High speed connectivity
  • Ultra Large 55 inch screens
  • Seamless service
  • Unrivalled immersive 360 experience

Carbon Offset Travel

Keeping with Kabir’s eco-conscious ethos, Fly FIVE has already offset 600 hours of flight-time under the Carbon Offset Service (COS) label, the world’s leader in carbon credit transparency. By supporting the Rimba Raya Biodiversity Project, Come Play Fly has taken stake in the protection of Borneo’s Tanjung Putting National Park, including its endangered biodiversity, local communities, and carbon sequestration potential. The Rimba Raya Biodiversity project is the largest REDD+ project in the world, triple gold certified under the Climate Community and Biodiversity  (CCB) standards, and certified by Verra’s Verified Carbon Standard (VCS). Holistic in its climate action, it satisfies all 17 UN SDG’s as per the SD Vista Standard and through its 3rd party certifications ensures accountability and material impact in its environmental, social and economic scope.

To learn more about Fly Five please click here.

As you can see, with FIVE Global Holdings, Kabir has built a brand that has something for everyone. Whether it’s contemporary elegance at FIVE Palm Jumeirah or luxurious hospitality in Zurich or the musical creativity with FIVE Music and a once-in-a-lifetime journey on Fly FIVE, Kabir Mulchandani has left no stone unturned and there is much more to come.

However, his entrepreneurial pursuits do not end there. As someone who is focussed on leaving the world a better place, Kabir continually uses his power and wealth for good via his philanthropic pursuits and vision for the future of sustainable real estate.