Africa Rising, a Durban-based independent property development company, purchased properties worth R300 million from Tongaat Hulett Developments during 2015. The company plan to roll out over R1,6 billion worth of developments in the Umhlanga Ridge area.
Andile Mnguni, Development Executive for Tongaat Hulett Developments says that the company set out to work with businesses and people who shared its vision for creating value for all stakeholders in an all-inclusive approach to growth and development. Africa Rising was the perfect candidate.
“They connected with our vision and have helped execute our plan for the area. All of the properties that they will develop will be complete and sold within the next five years,” he says.
In Mnguni’s opinion, the success of Africa Rising is testament to the fact that sound investments made in conjunction with Tongaat Hulett Developments have provided a strong foundation for sustainable businesses.
Africa Rising started as a fledgling development company in 2003. It’s ability to ride out the 2008 global recession which saw many property development companies fold; as well as its consistent growth; provide a good example for new businesses entering the property sector.
Mnguni says that Tongaat Hulett Developments plans to partner with some of these astute investors going forward, ultimately helping build sustainable businesses and grow the regional economy.
Africa Rising has purchased a total of 12 pieces of land from Tongaat Hulett Developments. The properties added to the company’s portfolio this year include The Madison, The Marina, Park Avenue, Aria and Jefferson in the Umhlanga Town Centre and a commercial property at Sibaya.
Currently four of these are under development. The Madison is a mixed use development that will cater to the medical sector benefitting from its strategic location opposite the Gateway Hospital. It comprises 97 apartments and 27 medical suites and is expected to be complete by August 2016. Construction has started on Park Avenue, a joint venture situated opposite the Porsche showroom. It is expected to be complete in November 2016. The residential apartments are well-located, close to the Umhlanga Ridge Town Centre and on the GO! Durban route. Aria will provide 300 retirement apartments and Jefferson accommodation for 240 students.
Africa Rising Chief Executive, Colin Kisten says that Africa Rising is currently working on plans for the development of the Sibaya commercial site, which is expected to begin by December 2016.
To date, Africa Rising has completed a number of developments along KwaZulu-Natal’s northern growth corridor, including the Grand Floridian, Grand Central and the Meridian in Umhlanga.
The Grand Floridian was a joint venture and a ground breaking development as it was the first that allowed owners of residential units to park on the same level as their homes.
Kisten says that the company created at least 1 000 job opportunities during 2015. The company focuses on skills development and is currently running a mentorship programme for previously disadvantaged emerging entrepreneurs and developers. “We also nurture subcontractors,” said Kisten. He cites the example of black-owned Fikile Construction, who was awarded a R225 million construction contract by Africa Rising.