First Ally, Top Services Sign N20bn Real Estate Deal

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 Top Services Limited,TSL, and First Ally fund manager, have signed a N20 billion real estate investment trust, REIT, consisting of 20 million units which will be on offer for subscription at N1,000 per unit from February 1, 2017.

TSL, a property development company specializing in retail and hospitality real estate across Nigeria, has a 20-year track record in the hospitality and retail space and started out as a developer and contractor to UAC Plc in its Mr. Biggs restaurant locations throughout the country. In the last 11 years, the firm has been developing apartment hotels, including La Cour in Ikoyi, Lagos. According to the Chairman of TSL, Tokunbo Omisore, an architect, the REIT became necessary because of the high interest rate on bank loans, which have been the major source of funding for retail development.

Omisore said the REIT was signed based on four retail malls TSL had sponsored- Adeniran Ogunsanya Mall, Surulere, Apapa Mall, Apapa, Cocoa Mall, Dugbe, Ibadan, Oyo State and Akure Mall, Akure, Ondo State. He said 97 per cent of net income on the malls would be distributed to investors at the end of each year, in addition to capital distribution. “Retail business is an integral part of our growth. Even in the US, it is an important part of their economy and creates opportunities for business and employment.

“The gross lettable area in each of our malls is creating jobs directly and indirectly to over 1,200 people. Shoprite alone gives employment to over 340 people. The cinema creates a few jobs and our local retailers are trying to grow.”

Giving reason for going into REIT, Omisore said “Unlike our South African competitors, we have a wrong funding. “The South Africans come in with huge funding running into 40, 60, 80 million dollars. These funds are given to them at 4 to 5 percent interest rate for 10 to 15 years.

“Here, if we operate on dollar rate, it is 10 to12 percent; if it is on naira rate, before now, it was 20 to 25 percent. Now, it is 29, 31 or 32 percent. How can we grow with this?”

Omisore advised the government to see mall development as an infrastructural development, stating that a shop that sits on 10, 000 to 12,000 square metres was an industry, considering that it has a bakery, an abattoir and a cinema and that all of these create opportunities for the future.

He said, “Government talks about creating employment, but how can this be made to happen? Even when they are to create employment, SMEs and entrepreneurs need a platform. Where is the platform? We talk about agriculture. Shoprite has about 28 per cent of agricultural products that are processed and packaged in Nigeria.

“Before Shoprite, all those involved in foods and beverage products died natural deaths, because they had nowhere to showcase their products. So, retail has provided opportunity for such people. “There is opportunity not only in the processing, but also in the packaging. There is competition now in doing this such that if you go to the stores, you see locally packaged products you will think they are imported.”

 

He therefore advised that such facilities be made affordable and structures put in place to accommodate even university graduates that go into SME.

 

Firm Introduces Timeshare, Co-working Space in Lagos
The co-working revolution is transforming real estate. Pioneered by start-ups, entrepreneurs and freelancers, a growing number of companies, large and small, are exploring how to incorporate the concept.3INVEST, a real estate firm,  has launched its corporate real estate model known as Lagos Co-work. The concept is that 3Invest would provide and operate flexible office spaces to grow businesses and create a collaborative community where people co-work and invest in timeshare opportunities.

Co-working and flexible space are fast becoming critical components of wider Corporate Real Estate, CRE, and portfolio strategy.

With a growing number of companies looking to tap into the benefits of co-working, it is only a matter of time before the trend becomes an integral part of the corporate real estate toolkit.

The results of the latest JLL Global Co-working Survey reveal that 61% of co-working space providers are planning to expand their operations and almost 80% expect the number of members to increase.

The number of members using co-working spaces globally has been steadily increasing yearly and it is predicted to reach one million by 2018. Co-working, a trend which emerged as a start-up phenomenon, has been largely embraced and adopted by more organisations. Companies such as Philips and IBM are utilising co-working space to encourage innovation alongside start-ups.

Speaking at the launch, the Chief Executive, 3Invest, Ruth Obih, stated: “We will provide smart and versatile spaces designed to fit the modern workplace strategy. Each Lagos co-work space will enhance performance and wellness of its user. Our locations will reflect the values of exceptional facilities and operations management, secure and accessible location, cosy and relaxed general area, Lagos co-work values, traditions and quality facilities will allow occupiers attain 100% focus on growing their business.”

3INVEST CRE aims to be the leading flexible workspace operator out of Nigeria. Spaces available include private offices, meeting rooms, workstations, training rooms and a relaxed and contemporary lounge area. Amenities include an uninterrupted power supply, high-speed internet, constant air conditioning system, comfortable office furniture, office hardware such as whiteboards, projectors, printers and scanners, coffee shop, café etc. Support services include mail handling, telephone answering/voicemail and business support services such as legal advisory services, company registration, tax advisory, bookkeeping and VAT services.

 

 

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Hamilton Nwosa

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