Abuja Waterfront Development promoted by Old Mutual

Posted On Tuesday, 08 April 2008 02:00 Published by
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Old Mutual Investment Group Property Investments (OMIGPI) has signed a memorandum of understanding with a Nigerian company for a joint venture to create and manage a waterfront development in Abuja, the federal capital

Ben Kodisang

Managing director Ben Kodisang says OMIGPI and Cerberus Ltd will have an equal share in a company driving the Jabi Lake development project.

“Our aim is to design, construct, develop and manage a precinct of commercial properties on a 29,3 hectare site at Jabi Lake in Abuja,” he says.

” We have committed seed capital and appointed Louis Karol Architects to develop a waterfront concept for the site. Louis Karol Architects have designed award-winning elements of the V & A Waterfront in Cape Town and last year completed the link mall extension there. “

Kodisang says the Nigerian joint venture is another step into Africa and other international markets for OMIGPI operations. Last year the OMIGPI-managed SA Corporate Real Estate Fund bought a 25% stake in Namibian-listed Oryx Properties Ltd.

It also follows establishment by OMIGPI and ICS Realty of India of the $500 million Triangle Real Estate India Fund which is initially aiming to capitalise on the rapidly expanding organised retail market there.

Kodisang says Abuja and the Federal Capital Territory have experienced huge population growth over the years.

“As Nigeria’s capital from 1991, Abuja is known for being the best purpose-built city in Africa. It houses the Presidential complex, National Assembly, and Supreme Court. In addition to a being major governmental centre, Abuja is the headquarters of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) as well as its military arm, ECOMOG. It also has the regional headquarters of OPEC and is home to most countries’ embassies.

“It is served by an international airport and in recognition of the importance of conference and business tourism, has a large conference centre in the central business district.”

Kodisang says his fellow directors of the Nigerian joint venture company are Amelia Beattie, chief operating officer of OMIGPI, and Hakeem and Myma Belo-Osagie, of Cerberus, business personalities in Nigeria.

Kodisang says Cerberus’ role is to ensure ownership by the JV company of  the development land with mixed use zoning rights.
“Cerberus will take the lead role in origination of the project, advise on community issues and manage local stakeholders. For the construction and development phase, Cerberus will advise on suitability of local professional teams to be appointed and attend to all public sector requirements and approvals. “

Kodisang says OMIGPI has begun research to finalise a business case and viability study for what could be a $300 million project and will help conceptualise the development.

“OMIGPI’s further role will be to work with local professional teams on design, construction and development, to draw on our experience in creating award-winning mixed use and retail properties and where appropriate to transfer skills.”

Last modified on Monday, 14 April 2014 17:37

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