What We Do
In 2006, Novare took a strategic decision to expand beyond the borders of South Africa. Novare Equity Partners was then established as an investment adviser focusing on Real Estate and Private Equity investing exclusively in sub-Saharan Africa outside of South Africa. Since then, the group has built an extensive network and gained valuable experience and insight into investing on the African continent, increasingly regarded as an investment destination of choice.
As a Real Estate advisor with a specific mandate to invest in the real estate sector, both retail and commercial, our strategy is to leverage off the growing population, rapid urbanisation and the expansion of international companies in the rest of Africa.
Given rising consumer spending by the increasingly affluent middle class in Sub-Saharan Africa, the need for modern retail facilities far outstrips the current supply. We have relationships with an extensive network of local and international retailers and have become their developers of choice. We have also built an internal team with boots on the ground across various locations on the continent. Our depth of experience and breadth of expertise allows us to identify viable development opportunities and mitigate the risks associated with those developments.
The acquisition of strategically located urban real estate is integral to our investment process. We partner with the largest and most successful retail companies in Africa as tenants, and we are able to deliver sound investments to the market. We deal with premier financial institutions, experienced project and property management teams and construction companies to mitigate construction and development risks.
Globally, the pace of urbanisation is increasing. It is predicted that by 2030, 59% of the world’s population will live in cities. For developing countries, this number is predicted to be 55%, an increase of just under 10 percentage points from current levels. The UN states that over 90% of urbanisation will occur in developing countries.
In 1980, only 28% of Africa’s population lived in cities, rising to 40% in 2010. There are 52 African cities with a population of more than a million, equalling Europe, and surpassing India which has 48. Faced with changing demographics, the cities in Sub- Saharan Africa are providing ample development opportunities for modern, commercial real estate. The supply deficit is significant relative to developed markets. For example, in the United States, the world leader of retail space, there is more than 2,000 m² of gross leasable area (GLA) per 1,000 people. The average GLA per 1,000 people in Europe is 224 m². In Nigeria and Kenya, the biggest economies in West and East Africa, the per capita supply is just 3 and 14 m² per 1000 people, respectively.
The continent’s rising middle class is increasingly demanding improved retail experiences.
The rise of mobile technology has had a visible impact on African consumers. Local and international news, social media and awareness of products and services available outside of the continent have contributed to the emergence of a savvy middle-class of consumers eager for higher quality products.
Novare launched its first Fund, the Novare Africa Property Fund I in July 2010, raising US$81 million from institutional investors. The Fund’s mandate was to develop commercial real estate in Sub-Saharan Africa excluding South Africa and it was particularly attractive to investors given its longer term horizon, as well as expected above-average returns.
Strong demand to participate in the African growth story as well as the additional portfolio diversification benefits were but some of the other benefits to Pension Funds investors who made an allocation to the Fund.
The Novare Africa Property Fund II was launched due to continued demand investors demonstrated for opportunities managed by reputable and knowledgeable professionals on the sub-continent. The fund closed on 30 June 2016 and raised $351 million. Both the Novare Property Funds I & II are domiciled in Mauritius and are listed on the Mauritian Stock Exchange.
Our Competitive Advantage
We have an extensive network of relationships with leading retailers who have a presence on the continent and those looking to enter the region.
We have experienced teams on the ground in all locations in which we have developments. We employ a hands-on approach to the developments and management of the properties which allows us to control the quality and deliver the projects in time and under budget.
We are a trusted partner by third party debt providers including the International Finance Corporation and some of the largest banks on the continent. Our projects have relatively low gearing with the Loan to Value ratios of the individual projects being between 18% to 35%.
We contain costs by controlling the full value chain over the property development and management cycle. Some of the activities we perform internally include:
- Sourcing of prime land or
- Fund capital allocation
- Fund reporting
- Securing the bank debt
- Design concept and management
of design consultants
- Construction management
- Property management post construction
The Novare Africa Property Fund I made its first investment in the development of the Novare Apo mall (opened June 2012).
Novare Apo Mall was the first mall in Abuja, Nigeria to be anchored by Shoprite. Other prominent tenants at the mall include MTN, Dominos and Pep.
Located in the heart of Abuja’s CBD in the mature Wuse area, which is experiencing a development boom, Novare Central is a mixed-use centre consisting of retail space and A-grade offices.
Africa’s largest food retailer, Shoprite, is the anchor retail tenant at Novare Central, which opened in July 2018.
The Novare Gateway centre is located in Abuja Nigeria, with Shoprite as the anchor tenant and opened in November 2017.
The mall is strategically located on the main highway between Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport and the CBD.
The Novare Lekki mall development in Lagos opened in August 2016. Novare Lekki is situated in Sangotedo on the Lekki-Epe Expressway.
With both Shoprite and Game as anchor tenants, it is the biggest mall in Nigeria’s commercial capital.
The Novare Matola mall development is located on the busy EN4 highway that connects Maputo in Mozambique to Nelspruit in South Africa. It falls within Matola, a historically industrial area of Maputo, the most populous city in Mozambique.
Matola has developed to become a strong mid-income residential node of Maputo. The retail anchor in this centre, which opened in December 2017, is Premier Superspar.
Novare GREAT NORTH
Our first foray into Zambia was the Novare Great North mall located along the bustling Great North Road of Lusaka.
Situated close to the famous Heroes Stadium, Novare Great North caters to a previously underserved region of Lusaka.
The development’s first phase opened in March 2018, and the second phase opened in November 2018.
Novare Great North is the only mall in Lusaka that has both Pick n Pay and Shoprite as anchor tenants.
Also situated in Zambia’s capital city, Novare Pinnacle mall is centrally located in a prime area of Lusaka that is home to residential areas, embassies, top schools and sporting facilities - as well as strong road networks.
Novare Pinnacle adds to the diversity of Lusaka’s vibrant retail sector, with Shoprite as the anchor tenant. Shoprite implemented their upmarket Fresh X design for their store, the first in Zambia. The development opened in March 2019.
Novare TWIN PALMS
Novare Twin Palms was a brownfield development that was initially anchored by Shoprite. The second phase of the mall was officially launched in November of 2019 with Woolworths having signed as the second anchor tenant for the expanded centre.
The mall is doing well so far with a very active gym and an exciting bar/ restaurant called cock and bull was opened in the second quarter of 2020 which was a highlight of the new phase of the mall.
Novare CENTRAL LUSAKA
Novare was appointed to undertake the development of Standard Chartered Bank’s head office in Lusaka, Zambia.
Construction commenced in July 2018 and agents have been appointed to handle leasing for the balance of the office space not being used by Standard Chartered.
Novare decided to pursue EDGE (Excellence in design for greater efficiencies) certification - a green building rating system for new residential and commercial buildings in emerging markets created by IFC, a member of the World Bank Group - affirming our commitment to sustainable design.
We believe in building green, which not only reduces our consumption of natural resources and the environmental impact of our buildings, but also lowers operational costs and boosts property values.
By building green, Novare can ensure a lower carbon footprint and the enhanced wellbeing of communities, which also strengthens our corporate brand and environment, social and governance (ESG) principles.