CEO tar­gets PE and Cen­tu­rion

• New CEO Mazwai wants to in­crease in­vest­ments in Port El­iz­a­beth and Cen­tu­rion precincts

Business Day - - FRONT PAGE - Alis­tair An­der­son Prop­erty Writer an­der­sona@busi­nesslive.co.za

Re­bo­sis Prop­erty Fund’s new CEO, Andile Mazwai, has am­bi­tions to in­crease its in­vest­ments in Port El­iz­a­beth’s Bay­west City and Cen­tu­rion’s For­est Hill, but mar­ket com­men­ta­tors say he will need to wait for a strong im­prove­ment in the econ­omy be­fore he can stamp his name on the group.

Re­bo­sis Prop­erty Fund’s new CEO, Andile Mazwai, has am­bi­tions to in­crease its in­vest­ments in Port El­iz­a­beth’s Bay­west City and Cen­tu­rion’s For­est Hill, but mar­ket com­men­ta­tors say he will need to wait for a strong im­prove­ment in the econ­omy be­fore he can stamp his name on the group.

Mazwai took over from founder Sisa Nge­bu­lana in Oc­to­ber, hav­ing been on Re­bo­sis’s board and hand-se­lected by him. Mazwai said the group’s cap­i­tal would be fo­cused on the Bay­west and For­est Hill nodes as op­posed to in­vest­ing more ag­gres­sively abroad.

He was speak­ing at the re­lease of Re­bo­sis’s fi­nan­cial re­sults for the year to Au­gust, which showed the re­tail­fo­cused fund grew its B share div­i­dend 7.4%, to 128.35c per share. Its A share div­i­dend grew at 5%, which had been guar­an­teed by Re­bo­sis.

“Bay­west and For­est Hill can be­come real nodes. They of­fer mas­sive de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties. Our shop­ping cen­tre in Bay­west City can serve peo­ple who open of­fices in the area and live in the area.

“The Bil­lion Group is de­vel­op­ing [a] res­i­den­tial [node] there, which will com­ple­ment the mall but we need a gen­eral level of de­vel­op­ment in the area so that it can be­come the node of choice for com­pa­nies and pro­fes­sion­als in Port El­iz­a­beth,” Mazwai said.

“For­est Hill in Cen­tu­rion also of­fers ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties. We are de­vel­op­ing our new head of­fice in For­est Hill near our For­est Hill shop­ping cen­tre.”

Re­bo­sis sold R971m of its shares in UK-in­vested New Fron­tier Prop­er­ties to a broad­based black eco­nomic em­pow­er­ment con­sor­tium dur­ing the re­port­ing pe­riod.

Re­bo­sis’s in­ter­est in New Fron­tier fell from 67.6%, to 36% through the sale.

Re­fer­ring to the 2017 fi­nan­cial year, Mazwai said Re­bo­sis had found an ar­ray of ways to save money.

“The solid dis­tri­bu­tion growth is mainly as a re­sult of the di­ver­si­fied na­ture of our en­larged port­fo­lio, as well as con­tin­ued as­set man­age­ment ini­tia­tives and a con­ser­va­tive ap­proach to risk man­age­ment.

“Dur­ing the year, we con­tin­ued with our cap­i­tal re­cy­cling pro­gramme, dis­pos­ing of a non­core as­set to the value of R115m and con­vert­ing the of­fice build­ing in Mahikeng to a 633-bed stu­dent res­i­dence.

“Our re­sults were fur­ther sup­ported by the in­ter­nal­i­sa­tion of a man­age­ment com­pany, re­sult­ing in an ad­di­tional sav­ing of R27.9m,” he said.

Stan­lib port­fo­lio man­ager Ahmed Mo­tara said Re­bo­sis ap­peared to have changed its strat­egy un­der Mazwai, who took over on Oc­to­ber 1.

“There seems to be seis­mic shift in strat­egy. Re­bo­sis was turned into a re­tail-fo­cused fund un­der Nge­bu­lana. But now, Mazwai wants to con­tinue to hold of­fices and is hold­ing a lower pro­por­tion of as­sets off­shore. We need to see how this dif­fer­ent strat­egy rolls out.”

Re­bo­sis has fore­cast dis­tri­bu­tion growth per or­di­nary share for the 2018 fi­nan­cial year of be­tween 4% and 6%.

Di­rec­tor at Meago As­set Man­age­ment Jay Pa­day­atchi said “the strat­egy to es­tab­lish the For­est Hill and Bay­west precincts ... may well cre­ate the nec­es­sary at­trac­tion to the nodes, but this will most likely be a medium-term strat­egy”.

THE SOLID DIS­TRI­BU­TION GROWTH IS MAINLY AS A RE­SULT OF THE DI­VER­SI­FIED NA­TURE OF OUR ... PORT­FO­LIO

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