Growthpoint Investec African Properties (GIAP), initially established as a joint venture between Growthpoint Properties and Investec Asset Management, announced on Dec. 12th that it has successfully concluded the acquisition of 100% of RMB Westport Real Estate Development Fund Limited (RMB Westport), the entity which houses the assets developed and owned by RMB Westport’s inaugural property development fund.
This is following capital commitments in excess of $212 million from several large institutional investors such as the IFC, and the acquisition of Achimota Retail Centre, Ghana earlier in the year. According to their press release, GIAP had acquired Manda Hill, Zambia from Hyprop in June, the investors had been undisclosed at the time. According to the press release, the cost of acquisition wasn’t disclosed but this new transaction gives GIAP an asset base of approximately US$500 million and a presence across a number of sub-Saharan African countries with the majority of exposure in key cities in Ghana, Nigeria and Zambia.
RMB Westport had a notable influence in Ghana with Stanbic Heights, Junction Shopping Centre, Accra Financial Centre, Takoradi Mall and Nigeria with assets such as The Wings, Circle Mall and still some other projects in the pipeline in Angola and Ghana. In 2016, they were seeking to raise about $450 million for the RMB Westport Fund II of which over $100 million was invested by the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) across the RMB Westport Fund II and Actis Fund 3. Grosvenor group also invested over $200 million in the RMB Westport Fund II.
Thomas Reilly, MD of Growthpoint Investec African Properties, says, “GIAP now owns 11 assets across four countries, with arguably some of the best performing landmark assets across both the retail and office sectors in the cities we are focusing on. These assets are predominantly well-matured and allow GIAP a significant amount of relevance in these markets, however, they still have the capacity to allow GIAP to enhance and extract growth from assets with a high degree of resilience to differing market cycles.”
Reilly adds, “We are excited to once again take advantage of a highly attractive entry-point in the cycle, adding quality yielding assets in select cities to our asset base at competitive prices, which we believe have the potential to offer strong growth prospects. The business continues to enjoy significant momentum, and we expect this to aid in the delivery of sustainable long-term investor returns.”
Reilly also explained at the African Property Investment Summit 2019 how GIAP aims at owning a portfolio of assets to gain influence in markets they operate in and this acquisition should give them the leverage they seek. We will be on the lookout of GIAP’s next steps.