Condev poised for period of change
CHANGE is afoot at the successful Gold Coast company Condev Construction as owners Steve and Tracy Marais prepare to take a step back and focus on strategy in the highly competitive industry.
The couple are in the process of forming an advisory board as they look at succession planning for the business they founded in 2002.
And they won’t rule out a future bid to list on the ASX, saying they already have many of the same structures in place as a listed company.
Robina-based Condev undertakes commercial and residential projects in the $1 million to $35 million range and employs more than 100 staff.
It has secured more than $200 million in forward work this financial year.
Projects recently completed include James Frizelle’s Isuzu dealership at Gaven, the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) head office at Ashmore and multi-unit developments for Robina Land Corporation.
Mrs Marais said it made sense for Condev to now establish an advisory board.
“At Steve’s and my age it is sensible to start looking at succession planning,” she said. “We have key people who are absolutely integral to what we do, and it creates an objectivity and a mentor and a coach for them in us having an advisory board.”
Mr Marais said the board would also give the company access to different work opportunities. “Our ultimate goal is to have a national business ... an office in every state,” he said.
“An advisory board gives us the opportunity to develop relationships and contacts.”
Mr Marais said the first member of the board was due to join in April. “We cannot name him because he is also extremely well known in our industry. He retires from his current role on March 31.”
He said despite ructions in the construction industry, particularly surrounding major projects such as Jewel and Spirit, the mid-market was performing well for investor and owner-occupier product.
Condev is currently building the third tower of the multi-tower Cambridge Residences development at Robina. Mr Marais said it was performing well among investors because it offered strong yields based on a growing pool of prospective renters in a fast-developing suburb.
“These units are yielding a 7.4 per cent return after body corporate fees,” he said.
“We have bought two units in Cambridge, the first time we have bought product from our developers.”
Chief operating officer Glenn Cream said the midmarket was where developers found the sweet spot.
“You look at that mid-end product, there is not a lot of it on the books for the next two to five years,” he said.
“So what gets developed will get snapped up because it is at an affordable price.”
Mr Marais said the focus for the next 18 months would be the aged-care market. Last year, Condev completed the $80-million Harbour Quays residential aged-care facility in Biggera Waters.
“Our particular area of interest and growth is the aged care market. It will be our focal point for the next 18 months,” Mr Marais said
Change is afoot ... Condev Construction’s owners Steve and Tracy Marais at their office in Robina..