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AFRILAND PROPERTIES PLC JOINS CS – DON RUN FOR A CURE 2015

Afriland Properties PLC recently teamed up with ‘The Child Survival and Development Organization of Nigeria (CS-DON), for this year’s Run for a Cure Charity Run.

As part of the global fight against breast, cervical and childhood cancer, the run took place on Saturday, November 7, 2015, from Catholic Church of Divine Mercy, Admiralty Way, Lekki Phase 1, to Muri Okunola Park, Victoria Island, Lagos.

See pictures below.

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The Africa GRI Club Magazine: The Big Interview with Uzo Oshogwe

MD/CEO, Afriland Properties PLC, Uzo Oshogwe, recently granted Africa Club Magazine an exclusive interview. In this interview, she discussed the challenges that face Nigeria’s property market, drivers, growth and even opportunities in the midst of the economic downturn.

Q. How is the Nigerian Real Estate sector affected by the current economic downturn? Are people optimistic or is it doom and gloom?

Though it may be in crisis, Nigerian economy is not severely damaged. Real Estate professionals and even investors are optimistic. In the midst of the downturn, numbers are still shooting up and the future is promising. The industry still boasts of 10% annual growth, a market value of N6.5 trillion in 2015 and an anticipated $13.6 billion investment in 2016.

In any economic downturn, there is an opportunity. The opportunity here lies in the ability to revolutionize and persevere.

Click below to read the full interview on pages 3 and 4.
http://goo.gl/07RD7v

China real estate investment growth slows to 6 year low

Property investment, a main driver of the China economy, grew 2.6 percent in the first nine months of 2015 from a year earlier, marking the slowest rate since the January to February period of 2009

China’s real estate investment growth over the first nine months of the year cooled to its slowest rate since the global financial crisis, although sales improved, underlining a mixed recovery in one of the most critical sectors of the economy.

Property investment, a main driver of the economy, grew 2.6 percent in the first nine months of 2015 from a year earlier, marking the slowest rate since the January to February period of 2009, data from the National Bureau of Statistics(NBS) showed on Monday, Economictimes reports.

“The fact that real estate investment is weak will hinder Q4 economic recovery,” said Oliver Barron, a China policy researcher at NSBO in Beijing.

While home sales and prices have improved in bigger Chinese cities over recent months after a barrage of government support measures, conditions remain weak in smaller cities and a huge overhang of unsold homes is discouraging new investment and construction.

New construction fell 12.6 percent during the January to September period from a year earlier though it slowed from a 16.8 percent annual drop in the first eight months, the NBS data showed.

Reflecting the sharp drop in housing starts, sales of earth excavating machines in China fell 35 percent in September from a year earlier, the China Construction Machinery Association (CCMA) said.

The property malaise has weighed on the world’s second-largest economy, which is expected to post its slowest growth in a 25 years in this year.

Still, the recent rebound in home sales could suggest the housing market is at least bottoming out.

The floor area of property sold grew 7.5 percent during the January-September period, up from a 7.2 percent increase in January to August, according to the NBS data.

Regulators cut downpayment requirements again late last month for first-time home buyers as they look to reduce the property market’s drag on the broader economy.

China’s average new home prices rose 0.3 percent in August from July, the fourth straight month of gains, though they were still down 2.3 percent from a year earlier, according to official data out last month.

Originally published in 3invest

Real Estate contribution to Nigeria’s GDP may hit N2.98tn

Stakeholders in the real estate in Nigeria have predicted that the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) may increase from the current N2.11 trillion($9.6 billion) to N2.98 trillion ($13.65 billion) in 2016, if the right environment is provided by the government.

The experts revealed that over 164,100 square metres space of new office space will be ready in Nigeria between 2015 and 2017. 144,100 square metres of that figure would be available in Lagos, while 20,000 square metres office space would be available in the federal capital territory, Abuja.

They explained that macroeconomics, capital policies and standards, demographic shifts, rapid urbanisation, increased political stability, sustainability in city planning, infrastructure deficit, industrialisation, consistent data and technology would be the major key drivers for growth. Their calculation was also based on the PWC’s projection and the increasing opportunities in the country as well as the growing number of international property investors and corporate occupiers in the sector.

However, the experts canvassed for clear policies direction to enhance seamless land accessibility, infrastructure development, proper legislation on Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) and other incentives to realise the growth. To make the growth a reality, they argued that policy response framework must be formulated with the consideration of sustainability principles, with particular attention to population growth, urbanisation limits and the use of natural resources.

They also expressed the hope that increased political stability and participation in local partnerships would continue to ease investors’ concerns relating to investing across Nigeria. Giving credence to the predicted growth at a forum of Real Estate Unite 2015 in Lagos, Managing Director of Federal Housing Authority (FHA), Mr. Roland Igbinoba, said that Nigeria has been projected to be 440 million people by 2050. He added that the ever increasing middle class urban population would require more housing.

Originally published in 3 invest

MD/CEO, Afriland Properties PLC, to Speak at Real Estate Unite 2015

The Managing Director/CEO of Afriland Properties PLC, Uzo Oshogwe, will be speaking at the fourth edition of Real Estate Unite, an annual real estate summit with the primary objective to unite players in the real estate sector whilst opening up the immeasurable potentials in Sub-Sahara’s real estate sector for sustainable growth.

The event which aims to elevate standards of the industry and practice by providing an opportunity to educate, promote and recognize excellence in the real estate sector in Africa is set to hold on the 29th and 30th of September at Eko Convention Centre, Lagos.

Uzo is a seasoned professional with tremendous wealth of experience, spanning over two decades, mainly in Information Technology and Banking.

Prior to joining UBA Properties, (now Afriland Properties Plc) she worked as an IT Specialist at Accenture UK based at several clients’ sites, including Jones LaSalle Europe, a financial and professional services firm specializing in real estate services and investment management.

She holds a BSc in Chemistry (1989) from Ambrose Alli University, Edo State and an MSc Information Systems Design (1996) from the University of Westminster, London.

The theme for this fourth edition is “Connecting the DOTS in Africa’s Real Estate”.

ALLEGED TERMINATION OF CONTRACT BETWEEN AFRILAND PROPERTIES PLC AND LAGOS STATE

The management of Afriland Properties Plc notes with concern, recent reports relating to its transaction to redesign and redevelop the iconic Falomo Shopping Centre in Lagos.

These unverified reports have implied that, the contract with the Lagos State Development and Property Corporation (LSDPC) was terminated on the grounds that the concession terms are “grossly detrimental” to Lagos State and its residents.  The reports also claim that Afriland Properties Plc only made a payment of N50 million for a 50-year lease of the government-owned land.

Though the authenticity of these reports is unconfirmed, Afriland strongly refutes the suggestion that it has engaged in any misconduct or that the transaction is in any way detrimental to the people and government of Lagos State.

We are strongly committed to creating a world class project, which will act as an economic magnet for central Lagos, creating opportunities for Lagosians and which crucially has been structured to ensure ongoing value will accrue to Lagos State and to Lagosians. The contract was negotiated transparently and in accordance with best practice.

Afriland Properties PLC and the Lagos State Development Property Corporation (LSDPC), acting on behalf of the Lagos State government, established a Special Purpose Vehicle( SPV) which is jointly owned by the parties for the specific purpose of developing the Falomo project.

Under the terms of the agreement, the SPV- Falomo Shopping Centre Development Company Ltd – was granted a concession to, amongst other things, develop, build, operate and maintain the Project on a Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis.

Afriland paid N50m (fifty million naira) to LSDPC as an expression of interest in the redevelopment project.

The LSPDC will receive a 35% interest in the SPV for its land contribution and through this significant Equity Holding, will continue to receive significant ongoing value

Afriland is obliged to fund the entirety of the development costs which is projected to exceed N30 billion without recourse to the Nigerian taxpayer.

The new facility will comprise a state-of-the-art shopping mall, office complex and generous parking facilities.

Afriland has consistently adhered to the terms of its agreement with LSDPC, as outlined in the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and Joint Venture Agreement that were signed and executed by the aforementioned parties.

Furthermore, all value to be derived from the creation of this world-class commercial venture will be held in, and enjoyed by Lagos State and its residents. The development will ultimately revert to the state upon expiration of the lease.

Apart from delivering an environment that befits the city and is consistent with the government’s goal of an aesthetically pleasing skyline, the Falomo site will be home to thriving businesses that will contribute significantly to the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state.

As an organization, Afriland Properties Plc and its affiliated companies have always upheld the values of integrity and excellence. We have nothing but the utmost respect for the dictates of the law and till date, have acted accordingly. As such, we are unequivocal in our belief that our sincere intentions for this landmark project will be validated in due course.

As a significant investor in Nigeria and one which is committed to ensuring value creation within the country, we would underline the importance of creating a business environment that is based on transparency, contractual certainty and social partnership. At a time when Nigeria urgently needs to diversify its economy and attract broad based foreign direct investment, the rumours we have identified do little to promote the National interest or create the business environment our country needs.

Uzo Oshogwe

MD/CEO, Afriland Properties Plc

 

FG alerts States on impending flood disaster, seeks relocation

IN a bid to curtail loss of lives and property, the federal government at the weekend appealed to Nigerians living along flood plains across the country to prepare for relocation to areas considered to be safe.

The Federal Ministry of Environment warned that coastal flooding resulting from sea level rise and tidal surges is likely to occur in Lagos, Bayelsa, Rivers and Delta states while massive rains are expected to cause river flooding in Niger, Sokoto Rima, Benue and Anambra states.

Also, flash flooding could be experienced in some urban locations such as Ibadan, Lagos, Sokoto, Birin Kebbi and other towns along the country’s coastlines.

The warning is coming on the heels of the House of Representatives demand that relevant government agencies take immediate steps to avert ‘massive flooding’ along River Benue and Lower River Niger.

The parliament also appealed to the state governments and other relevant stakeholders to take note of the 2015 seasonal rainfall prediction by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NIMET), drawing their attention to the notice by the Cameroonian government of the impending release of excess water from Lagdo Dam between now and November.

Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Environment, Mrs. Nana Fatima Mede who disclosed this to newsmen at an emergency stakeholders’ meeting on 2015 flood in Abuja in Abuja, urged Nigerians to embark on clearing of drainages, culverts and canals in the areas of jurisdiction and remain at alert for any eventuality.

She recalled that Nigeria in 2012 experienced one of the most devastating floods in decades in which about 360 lives were lost and property worth billions of Naira also lost to the disaster.

According to her, the unfortunate incident cost government about N17billion distributed to various affected states and relevant MDA’s to tackle the disaster occasioned by that flooding.

Mede noted that the impending gradual release of excess water from the LAGDO Dam by Cameroon could take place anytime soon and that massive rains in the coming months poses serious threat to lives and property while states that are likely to be affected are Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, Benue and Kogi.

She observed that government is deeply concerned about the likely loss of lives and property as well as other negative environmental consequences and advised that in extreme cases, state governments and local authorities should prepare to evacuate residents as well as designate and prepare public places for any eventuality.

Mede appealed to states, local governments, churches, mosques and traditional rulers to sensitize their people and communities and ensure that steps are taken to avoid unnecessary loss of lives and property.

Meanwhile, adopting the prayers of a motion by Emmanuel Orker-Jev (APC, Benue), the House urged the Federal Government to consider the establishment of a joint commission with the Cameroonian government to manage the Lagdo Dam and River Benue waterways.

The House said the government should also ensure that the contract for the dredging of River Benue and Niger is awarded and constructed to mitigate the menace and effects floods around the area.

The lawmakers equally passed another motion urging the Federal Government to direct the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) to commence rehabilitation of Festac Satellite towns to avert “looming epidemic” in the area.

Originally published in the Guardian Newspaper

Real estate, ICT, fastest growing sectors in Nigeria – UN

Real Estate, as well as Information and Communications Technology (ICT) have been identified by the UN as some of the fastest growing sectors in the Nigerian economy. Mr Patrick Osakwe, Head, Poverty and Trade Department, UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), made this known in an interview in Lagos.

Osakwe said that real estate, as well as information and communications technology, in conjunction with the financial services sector have the capacity to drive economic growth, if well harnessed. He spoke against the backdrop of the recent Annual Report on African Development by UNCTAD, which has been presented to the public in 15 African countries.

“In Nigeria, the fastest growing sectors would be real estate, as well as Information and Communications technology. That is peculiar to Nigeria, among others, and these sectors are suffering from a level of deficit that needs to be addressed, to maximize their potential. According to the UNCTAD development report, Africa’s fastest growing services sub-sectors are transport, storage and communications, which grew at 5.8 per cent, while others like hotel, retail and wholesale trade grew at 5.0 per cent.

“The services sector accounted for 50 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate of most African countries. “The report actually focused on the services sector as an untapped sector, which has contributed immensely to the GDP of most African countries in the last five years,” he said. Part of the report stated that access to reliable sources of energy is low in Africa, with about 74 per cent of the population without access to electricity.

The report also said that the cost of closing the energy gap would cost up to $93 billion (N18.32 trillion) annually by 2030, which has caused a setback in the growing sectors like real estate and ICT. Real estate experts asserted that the population of people living in the suburbs of major cities like Lagos and Abuja would increase by 50 per cent by 2025.

According to them, the reasons for the population increase was huge rural-urban migration and the poor living conditions like lack of portable water and huge rent expenses.

Originally published in The Vanguard

Elumelu Foundation Organizes Bootcamp for 1,000 Emerging African Entrepreneurs

As part of Tony Elumelu Foundation’s (TEF’s) $100 million commitment to empower African entrepreneurs, the 1,000 emerging entrepreneurs that had earlier been selected under the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP) Class of 2015, converged on Sango Ota, Ogun State, for a two-day boot camp session.

The event, which took place at the weekend, brought together the emerging entrepreneurs selected from 51 African countries and from all of Africa’s geo-political regions – North, East, Southern, Central and West Africa – and major language blocs – Anglophone, Francophone, Lusophone, and Arabic Africa – as well as every state in Nigeria. They were selected from a diversity of sectors that ranged from agriculture to education to energy, fashion and ICT.

Speaking at the event, the TEF/Holdings Chairman, Mr. Tony Elumelu, was quoted in a statement to have spoken on his life experiences and the principles that he learnt from mentors, such as Chief Ebitimi Banigo that he applied towards his own successful entrepreneurship journey.  He answered an array of questions during a two-hour question-and-answer session, offering perspective on innovation, strategy, governance, financial management and decision-making.

He added: “Entrepreneurship is not a short-term journey and I am pleased that we can help these emerging leaders, as they seek to join me in transforming Africa. My commitment towards creating a thousand new entrepreneurs who can change Africa forever, has now become a reality.  This is only the beginning.”

The Vice-President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, who was at the event, welcomed the entrepreneurs from across Africa and called on them to take advantage of the networks built in Ota to develop pan-African investment and trade networks.

According to Osinbajo: “This programme deserves all the commendation it is getting. Tony Elumelu has courageously put his money where his mouth is. Societies can’t develop without social entrepreneurs. I charge you to be little Elumelus and create opportunities for others.”

The Vice-President was joined by other senior political leaders including Kaduna State Governor, Mr. Nasir El Rufai, and the Prime Minister of Benin Republic, Lionel Zinsou.

Other speakers at the event were  Parminder Vir, CEO of the Tony Elumelu Foundation; Mo Abudu, Founder/CEO of Ebony Life TV;  Nollywood screen icon Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde;  Nimi Akinkugbe, CEO, Bestman Games; Rasheed Olaoluwa, CEO of the Bank of Industry; former SEC DG Arunma Oteh; inspirational coach Lanre Olusola; Martin Eigbike, Accenture Development Partnerships;  governance expert Angela Aneke; playwright and producer Adewale Ajadi; Sam Nwanze, the Heirs Holdings Director of Finance and Investments; and David Rice, Director of the Africapitalism Institute.

In his goodwill message to the visiting Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs,  President Muhammadu Buhari, wrote: “I am proud that Nigeria (and a Nigerian) is taking the lead in this effort to promote self-worth, encourage entrepreneurship, create jobs, build and promote networks for intra-African trade, business collaboration and investment.  Our Administration is committed to unlocking all such opportunities to restore dignity to our people. This programme is one example I hope others will emulate and I commend Tony Elumelu and his Foundation for their endeavor and leadership in this area.“

As he closed the bootcamp, Mr Elumelu challenged all the entrepreneurs by saying, “I want to go to Zambia when I am 80 years old and meet someone who shows me their manufacturing business or financial institution and tells me that it was built starting with $10k from Tony Elumelu.  That’s what this is about and that’s what you owe me.” he added.

“The return I want from this $100 million investment is your success, because your success is Africa’s success.”

After the bootcamp, the TEEP would focus on providing the seed capital and support for the entrepreneurs to put into practice the knowledge gained from the bootcamp and the 12 weeks of training carried out prior to the event, the statement explained.

Originally published in Thisday

Nigeria-USA Chamber to raise $1bn infrastructure fund

The Nigeria-USA Chamber of Commerce (NUSACC) has concluded plans to hold a summit where at least $1 billion Diaspora funds will be mobilised to help plug infrastructure gap in Nigeria.

The 5th International Summit will take place betweenAugust 27 and 29, 2015, at Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in Washington DC, the United States.

A statement by Primus Igboaka, secretary, NUSACC, disclosed that the summit will feature networking and match-making.

According to Igboaka, who is also an adjunct professor of communication at Kent State University, Ohio, the business-to-business match-making event will provide opportunities for personal interactions between United States business leaders and Nigerian entrepreneurs, while also creating a platform for them to showcase their products and services.

“They are avenues for market meetings, presentations and match-making between businesses and key industry players,” said Igboaka, who added that players in agriculture, construction and real estate, energy & power, information and communication technology (ICT) and franchising, among others, are expected to be there.

Adebowale Adefuye, Nigerian Ambassador to USA, will be the key note speaker. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former minister of finance and coordinating minister for the economy; and Habib Baba Habu, consul- general of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, will also be there as speakers.

Other distinguished speakers expected at the Washington Summit are Catherine Uju Ifejika, chair/CEO Britannia Nigeria Limited; William Fanjoy, director of Virginia/Washington DC U.S. Export Assistance Centers;  Tom Foster, national spokesperson for the Mass Mutual Financing Group, and Harry Alford, president/CEO, National Black Chamber of Commerce, Washington, DC.

The Nigeria-USA Chamber of Commerce, incorporated in 2009 in the State of Ohio as a non-profit organisation, functions as a unique business and legislative advocacy organisation comprising members and professionals with business management, finance and accounting backgrounds.

It has successfully hosted business summits in the United States and Nigeria that attracted more than 1500 interested businesses and entrepreneurs ready to explore the business opportunities in both countries.

In 2012, it hosted its 3rd International Business Summit in Lagos, which brought together more than 24 United States businesses to explore opportunities in Nigeria. The summit witnessed investment of huge funds by US. businesses in Nigeria.

The U.S. companies that made investments cut across players in construction, transport logistics and courier services, real estate and cosmetics. These companies currently have offices in Lagos and are expanding to other parts of the country, a statement by the organisation said.

Originally published in Business Day

 

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