Angelo Xuereb

As Chairman and Founder of AX Group, Angelo Xuereb is synonymous with entrepreneurial success in Malta. As a child, Mr Xuereb dreamt of becoming a successful businessman while he worked tirelessly on his father’s farm, planning and constructing rooms out of rubble. Even at a young age, there was no doubt in his mind that his hard work and savvy business acumen would take him all the way to the top.

Mr Xuereb began his career in his father’s construction and property business, and quickly realised he had found his calling in the construction industry. He set out to forge his own path, and after marrying his wife Josephine, he invested a modest sum of 200 Maltese lira (about €500) they received in wedding gifts into his own construction enterprise. Launched in 1977, AX Construction fast became one of Malta’s leading building and civil engineering contractors, with operations expanding into a hard rock quarry and the first state-of-the-art pre-cast and pre-stressed concrete factory on the island. Since then, AX Construction has completed many prestigious projects, including luxury hotels, a private hospital, a retirement village, specialist restoration works on landmark sites, and many civil engineering structures that have strengthened Malta’s infrastructure. Ever guided by his long-term vision, Mr Xuereb eventually diversified his company. He started by expanding into the hospitality sector with the opening of the four-star Sunny Coast Holiday Complex in Qawra in 1983, followed by the four-star Suncrest Hotel in 1988 – and the latter remained Malta’s largest hotel for 20 years. Under the AX Hotels brand, Mr Xuereb has launched many more award-winning hotels, including the five-star AX The Palace, the four-star AX The Victoria, as well as Palazzo Capua – a 200-year-old palazzo which Mr Xuereb meticulously restored to its former glory, inside and out.

Mr Xuereb has long harboured a vision to restore value to Malta’s capital city of Valletta. In keeping with this spirit, he has completed several noteworthy projects, including the superstructure of the new Parliament House at City Gate, the Old University campus, and the relaunched Is-Suq tal-Belt (City Market). An entrepreneur at heart, Mr Xuereb has continued to pursue many other business ventures, ranging from restaurants, private healthcare and Malta’s first retirement village to creating the Valletta Cruise Port and the total regeneration of the Valletta Waterfront. Mr Xuereb has also enjoyed a very active civic life. In 1994, he won a landslide victory and was elected independent mayor for Naxxar Local Council for two terms, even winning the award for Best Managed Local Council. He has also served as Vice President of several clubs and societies and was a council member of the Malta Federation of Industry, Chamber of Commerce, and Building Industry Consultative Council. In 1982, he was bestowed an honorary knighthood by the Sovereign Order of St John of Jerusalem. And, together with his wife, Mr Xuereb also launched the AX Foundation in 2006, which continues to leave a positive impact on Maltese communities by raising funds and awareness in support of various charities, community initiatives, and organisations. In 2012, Mr Xuereb published his autobiography ANGELO, which chronicles his life story and the challenges he overcame in his career. He wrote the book to inspire budding entrepreneurs to pursue their greatest ambitions with determination, creativity and integrity.

Then, in 2017, AX Hotels opened the Saint John Boutique Hotel in Valletta, followed by the five-star Rosselli – AX Privilege on Merchants’ Street. Housed in a beautifully restored 17th-century palazzo, this luxury boutique hotel is the home to the Michelin-starred Under Grain, one of Malta’s first fine dining restaurants to achieve this coveted, internationally recognised rating. And to this day, Mr Xuereb continues to keep his eyes peeled for valuable pieces of architecture that will regenerate Valletta to its former glory. Throughout his career, Mr Xuereb has won many prestigious awards, including Employer of the Year and the EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Malta. He was also nominated at the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Awards held in Monaco.

Mr Xuereb and his wife have a son, Richard, and two daughters, Claire and Denise, who are actively involved in the family business and continue to drive the company forward. In 2020, 45 years after Mr Xuereb began his journey from a humble home office, AX Group relocated to the AX Business Centre in Mosta, a state-of-the-art office complex. Masterminded by Mr Xuereb himself, this flagship HQ building was designed to be a true reflection of the high level of quality AX Group is renowned for. Today, AX Group is a multi-million asset corporation comprising a diverse range of companies operating in construction, development, hospitality and healthcare.

Christopher Paris

Christopher Paris born in Floriana aged 68, married to Rose nee Camilleri, they have a daughter and two sons. Educated at the Floriana primary school, Naxxar Technical School for his secondary education and at Bath University UK for his tertiary education. He holds a Masters’ of Science degree in Construction Management.
Chris Paris involvement in construction dates back by some forty years, he started as a draughtsperson with MaltConsult international and promoted to Architectural Design leader, engaged on a number of foreign prestigious projects. Since then he was engaged with other international architectural establishments including Richard England and Partners Ltd. His involvement in the local scene varies from concept design work to site management, particularly in the hospitality industry on various hotel projects.
In 2001 he joined VISET plc, as the manager responsible engaged for the development of the cruise port and assigned to organise the port operations management team. He succeeded the first GM after his resignation from the post and remained heading the organisation for a number of years. It is recognised that this opportunity not only fulfilled his youth aspirations but also contributed towards the successful building of a healthy cruise industry for Malta.
In 2009 he joined the Grand Harbour Rehabilitation Corporation as the CEO of this Government owned entity. GHRC is engaged on the rehabilitation and development of a number of prestigious projects related to the rehabilitation of Valletta and its immediate environment. One of the projects entrusted to GHRC was the construction and development of the Parliament building deigned by Renzo Piano, this also incorporated a number of satellite sites being the City Gate and the associated ditch works, and reconstruction of the Barrakka Lift. Under the GHRC list of projects there was the successful completion of restoration and rehabilitation of the former St Elmo into a Malta’s Military History Museum and the Dock One Waterfront project at Cottonera. He served for 4 years as Deputy Chairman of Malta Industrial Parks besides attending to the board duties he served as the chairperson of the Tenders Adjudication committee for MIP and ME.
Since January 2015 he has reengaged with the private sector; since then he was nominated to sit as a board member of AX Group of companies and AXRE.

Dr. Christian Farrugia

Dr Christian Farrugia is an advocate by profession. He studied law at the University of Malta leading to the conferment upon him of a doctorate degree in 1986. He subsequently pursued and successfully completed his LL.M post-graduate studies in Maritime & Insurance Law at University College London. Upon returning to Malta in 1988, he immediately joined a legal firm which had been set up by his late father and practiced in civil and commercial law and litigation for several years. In 1995, he set up the firm’s international practice which over the years supported clients operating in a multiplicity of industry sectors, including the real estate, construction, maritime, technology, health and hospitality, and online gaming sectors. In the year 1996, Dr Farrugia also set up F&A Services Limited (today known as ARQ Fiduciaries Limited), a company which is licenced by the MFSA to provide trusts and fiduciary services under the Trusts & Trustees Act. ARQ Fiduciaries Ltd today forms part of the ARQ Group, a multi-disciplinary professional services organization of which he is also a founder and director.

In the year 2009, Dr Farrugia merged his legal practice with other established legal practitioners, to set up Fenech Farrugia Fiott Legal – a leading business law firm with offices in Valletta and B’Kara. His areas of professional focus today include corporate law, maritime law, mergers and acquisitions and financial services.

Throughout his career, Dr Farrugia acted as legal counsel to the boards of numerous corporate clients across several industries. He currently also holds the position of director of five regulated entities including A.X Real Estate PLC, Merkanti Bank plc and Advent Insurance PCC Ltd. He acts as Chairman of the latter two.

Dr Farrugia is a part-time lecturer in maritime law at the University of Malta and honorary consul to the Commonwealth island of Vanuatu in Malta.

Denise Xuereb

Denise Micallef Xuereb is CEO of AX Real Estate, a role she stepped into after being Director of Construction and Development at AX Group. As one of the few women operating in the top echelons of real estate and construction in Malta, Ms Micallef Xuereb has accumulated significant milestones and breakthroughs throughout her career. As the daughter of AX Group Chairman and Founder Angelo Xuereb, Ms Micallef Xuereb has been enthralled by buildings and design since her teens, and has sought to follow in her father’s footsteps while forging her own path within Malta’s property sector. After graduating in Management from the University of Malta, Ms Micallef Xuereb’s first major project was to oversee the final stages of the five-star AX The Palace Hotel in Sliema in 2008. She then embarked on an MSc in Project and Programme Management at the prestigious École Supérieure de Commerce in Paris – on the back of which she managed the construction of the New Parliament Buildings and Opera House, one of the most extensive construction projects carried out in Valletta.

As Director of AX Construction from 2010, Ms Micallef Xuereb spearheaded the company’s restoration division with a talented team capable of conducting high-quality restoration works on Malta’s stone heritage. Under her directorship, AX Construction’s reputation went from strength to strength. It was entrusted with many landmark construction and restoration projects, including the restoration of St John’s Co-Cathedral and the building of its new visitor centre; the development of AX Business Centre in Mosta; Farsons Brewhouse’s conversion in Mrieħel; the Maritime Museum’s rehabilitation in Vittoriosa; and the restoration and construction of a visitor centre at St Paul’s Catacombs in Rabat.

Ms Micallef Xuereb has served as an Executive Director on the board of AX Group for the past decade. She is also a council member of the Malta Developers’ Association, a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and an active participant in the Building Industry Consultative Council, where she champions sustainable development and eco-friendly advances within the sector. With her participation in various forums and conferences, Ms Micallef Xuereb remains at the forefront of innovative ideas on the international scene. Steadfast in her vision, she pursues projects and investments where quality design meets practical functionality that will serve well into the future.

Joseph Lupi

Joseph Lupi is a Non-executive Director and Consultant for AX Real Estate and a finance and property expert with a long and rich career behind him. Mr Lupi started off working in the banking sector in 1971 when he joined Barclays Bank DCO (which later became Mid-Med
Bank Ltd). There, he worked in accounts, foreign exchange, bills/credits, and advances, and he also worked on the team responsible for the computerisation of the bank’s accounting system in Malta and Gozo. In 1980, Mr Lupi joined Frank Salt Real Estate Ltd as an Office and Finance Manager. He was appointed Director a year later, and then Managing Director in 1984 when he took over full control of the company’s operations both locally and overseas, as well as management of its financial and legal affairs. Since then, the company has grown consistently across its operations and is now one of Malta’s leading real estate companies with many prestigious local and international awards to its name. In almost 40 years at Frank Salt, Mr Lupi’s achievements were many. To name a few, he computerised the business’ database (the first real estate company to do so in Malta), set up regional offices in Malta and Gozo, and developed intensive training programmes covering techniques for selling and negotiating, valuations, customer care, bank loans, tax and legal considerations, regulations for foreign property investors, and more. And from 2003 until his retirement in 2018, Mr Lupi was also the company’s Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO).

Throughout his career, Mr Lupi has travelled extensively to attend international property fairs, deliver seminars to foreign investors, and set up strategic partnerships with overseas representatives. He is also a past Member of the Malta Chamber of Commerce, the German Maltese Chamber of Commerce, and a present Member of the Institute of Management.

Michael Warrington

Michael Warrington is CEO of AX Group, and his AX journey started over two decades ago. Originally approached for financial advice, Mr Warrington became CFO of AX Group in 2000. He retained the position until 2016 when AX Group Chairman and Founder Angelo Xuereb appointed him as the Group’s new CEO. From the get-go, Mr Warrington has drawn on his extensive background in banking and finance to lead with a forward-thinking but measured approach, driving AX Group towards steady year-on-year growth.

Mr Warrington came to AX Group as a highly skilled executive with experience across several industries. He holds a BA Hons in Accountancy and an MA in Financial Services from the University of Malta. He is also a Certified Public Accountant, a Fellow of the Malta Institute of Accountants, and an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers in the UK. The CEO’s varied career began at Bank of Valletta in 1979 at a very formative time in Malta’s financial services industry. The company underwent an IPO on the Malta Stock Exchange in Mr Warrington’s time there, and he was also involved in forming two subsidiary banks: BOV International Ltd and Valletta Investment Bank Ltd.

After qualifying as an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, Mr Warrington spent four years as CFO of Air Malta, leading the airline to unprecedented profitability. Since then, Mr Warrington set up his own firm, joined the team that opened The Westin Dragonara Resort, and was instrumental in establishing FCM Bank Ltd in 2011 and restructuring Novum Bank Ltd between 2013 and 2016. Mr Warrington serves as a director on the board of several private and public listed companies both in Malta and internationally. He has held board positions with GO plc, Malta Properties Company plc and various family-owned businesses. He is currently director of AX Group plc, AX Investments plc, Cablenet Communications Systems plc, Together Gaming Solutions plc, Novum Bank Ltd, Citadel Insurance plc, Nissan International Insurance Ltd, and Valletta Cruise Port plc.

Stephen Paris

Stephen Paris is an accountant and auditor. He completed his final ACCA exams in 1989 and worked at Deloitte Malta for 30 years. In 2000, he was made partner and took on various leadership roles at Deloitte, namely, Head of Audit, Financial Services Industry Leader and Head of Risk and Regulatory Advisory. Throughout his career, Mr Paris has managed numerous audit and non-audit assignments for a variety of clients, including private, public, listed, state-owned, foreign-owned, family businesses, and regulated entities, as well as organisations operating across sectors such as financial services, leisure, entertainment, real estate, transport, manufacturing, import/distribution, retail, and more.
Since leaving Deloitte in May 2019, Mr Paris has built a diverse portfolio of clients for whom he performs a variety of roles, including acting as director and providing support services to entities licensed by the Malta Financial Services Authority or entities that are listed or about to be listed on the Malta Stock Exchange. Mr Paris was also a Council Member of the Malta Institute of Accountants and lecturer in auditing for several years.

Dr. David Wain

Dr. David Wain is in-house counsel for the AX Group, providing the directors and management with strategic and operational legal advice, and heading the AX Group Legal Office.

He also occupies the role of Company Secretary AX Real Estate p.l.c. and of various group subsidiaries, contributes to the development of Group policies, procedures and controls and represents the Group in arbitration proceedings and cases before the Maltese courts.

Dr. Wain graduated with a Doctor of Laws degree in 2002 and was admitted to the Bar in 2003. He has also completed a Masters degree in Business Administration with the University of Leicester in the UK.