Hyprop buys 87% of Lusaka-based African Land which owns Manda Hill

Manda Hill Mall, Lusaka

Hyprop, the listed retail property fund, has agreed to acquire 87 percent of the issued shares in African Land Investments for R768 million.

The transaction has resulted in African Land, which owns the Manda Hill shopping centre in the Zambian capital, not proceeding with its proposed listing on the JSE or Lusaka Stock Exchange.

Attacq, previously Atterbury Investment, which listed its R12.5 billion commercial and retail property assets on the JSE last month, will acquire 12.4 percent of the issued shares of African Land Investments for R110m, while African Land chief executive Kevin Teeroovengadum will own 500 000 shares in the company.

Attacq’s African portfolio includes an effective 32.5 percent stake in Atterbury Africa, a joint venture partnership with Hyprop and Atterbury Property, that invests in retail centres and developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

Pieter Prinsloo, Hyprop’s chief executive, said yesterday that the acquisition was an attractive investment and complementary to Hyprop’s strategy of investing in high quality shopping centres across the continent.

“African Land’s strategy of acquiring existing income-producing properties supports Hyprop’s strategy and will provide Hyprop with geographical diversification, as well as further investment opportunities in Africa.

“The investment in African Land, together with Attacq, will also complement Hyprop’s existing partnership with Attacq in Atterbury Africa, which focuses mainly on new developments,” he said.

African Land will continue as a separate property entity with Teeroovengadum remaining as chief executive. He will be tasked with the strategic objective of growing the portfolio through well-considered acquisitions of predominantly existing retail properties in carefully selected areas, offering above-average rental returns within the sub-Saharan African region outside South Africa.

Teeroovengadum said the investment by Hyprop and Attacq demonstrated the strength of the African Land story and growing stature of the sub-Saharan African real estate market.

“We are delighted to have attracted investors of this calibre. The expertise and networks they bring will strengthen our efforts to meet African Land’s vision,” he said.

African Land will engage with the Zambian authorities and investors with a view to providing Zambian investors with exposure to Manda Hill. At 44 000m2, it is the first regional shopping centre in Zambia and the largest in sub-Saharan Africa outside of South Africa.

Hyprop signalled its entry into the African market in August last year when it concluded an agreement with the Atterbury Group.

In terms of this agreement, Hyprop committed to invest R750m in the fund over the next five years.

Hyprop shares fell 0.32 percent to close at R74.55 yesterday. Attacq was flat at R16.50. – Business Report