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Africa goes shopping

14 Dec 2017

As African countries work at reducing the infrastructure deficit, property developers are bringing new projects on line at an ever-faster pace.

Novare Fund Manager, which invests in retail and commercial real estate in sub-Saharan Africa outside of South Africa, opened over 34 000 square metres of prime retail space over the last two weeks in Nigeria and Mozambique.

Novare Gateway - a modern lifestyle centre of 15 000 square metres offering a combination of shops, restaurants and entertainment – opened in Abuja, Nigeria on 30 November 2017. This was followed by the opening of the 19 500 square-metre Novare Matola mall in Mozambique’s capital, Maputo on 9 December 2017.

Derrick Roper, chief executive of Novare Equity Partners, sub-advisor to Novare Fund Manager, commented: “We are proud to host the opening of Novare Gateway and Novare Matola, the newest developments in our portfolio of property investments in Nigeria, Mozambique and Zambia.

“In these countries, our projects contribute to infrastructure development and sustainable job creation. They facilitate trade and help meet growing consumer demand for a modern shopping experience.”

Situated on the busy EN4 highway connecting Maputo with South Africa’s Nelspruit, Novare Matola is the first formal shopping centre in Maputo’s bustling Matola area and is expected to have an impact on the community which will benefit from an entirely new retail experience.

Developed at a cost of US$47 million, Novare Matola is a modern lifestyle centre occupied by 50 stores. The centre means that shoppers looking for diversity no longer need to travel to Nelspruit to get what they need as it houses a first class mix of regional and international retailers, with 992 open parking bays.

Novare Matola is anchored by a 6 000 square-metre Premier Superspar store and has the potential to increase in size to 50 000 square metres during future development phases.

Novare Gateway is located on the main 10-lane highway between Abuja's Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport and the central business district. With modern infrastructure and facilities, and Shoprite as the anchor tenant, the centre is well situated to meet the needs of the growing Abuja community.

It is the Novare Real Estate Africa portfolio's largest retail development in Abuja. The centre was developed at a cost of US$68 million and includes a second phase that will in future see another 10 000 square metres added to accommodate 33 more shops.

Other malls in Abuja owned by Novare include the 8 267-square metre Novare Apo mall located about 18km from Novare Gateway to the south-east of Abuja. In the North, Novare is developing the 12 508-square metre Novare Central office park, a mixed-use centre consisting of retail space and A-grade offices.

In Lagos, Novare developed the 22 000-square metre Novare Lekki mall, which commenced trading in August 2016. Novare Lekki was awarded Real Estate Deal of the Year by The Lagos Chamber of Commerce & Industry at its 2016 commerce and industry awards in July this year.

Novare Equity Partners has a 10-year track record of real estate development in sub-Saharan Africa. The group attributes its ability to successfully develop and manage modern retail and commercial facilities to its hands-on approach and on-the-ground presence in the countries where it operates.