The table-top event, Design Mission Africa, will bring together real estate giants from both a buyer and supplier sector in Johannesburg in November to establish a smooth pathway for the completion of current projects in Africa.

By Ravi Kumar, director of IDE, organisers of Design Mission Africa  

African real estate has become an increasing part of investment portfolios over the past two decades, which prompts the question about African prospects for the next decade. Is it a good time to invest in African real estate? What is the market like in Africa? And which market is lucrative?

While acknowledging market volatility, there is consensus that there are attractive opportunities for acquisition in African real estate. Favourable economic and demographic characteristics in certain countries and the trend towards urbanisation underpin good long-term fundamentals, and form the basis for Design Mission Africa.

What countries are attracting investment?
Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya and South Africa are regarded as mature markets and viable destinations for inward investment capital. However, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Mauritius, Uganda, Zambia and Tanzania have recently enhanced their attractiveness in terms of real estate opportunities.

The state of real estate in Africa
Real estate markets in parts of Africa have undergone considerable improvement in recent years. The quality of stock is improving, driven principally by international occupiers whose requirements and corporate governance are dictating that building design, materials and environmental considerations all comply with their global standards.

Global trends such as rapid urbanisation will lead to substantial growth in the global real estate industry over the next five years. Opportunities in the industry will surge, as will assets invested in the sector. Investment returns from real estate in Africa’s rapidly expanding economies significantly exceed those achievable in almost all developed markets with forecasts of 20% net annual returns.

The opportunities across Africa are significant and span every sector. In almost all markets, demand for high-quality retail, office and industrial space continues to outstrip supply as international and local occupiers respond to new economic opportunities.

Huge shortfalls in residential property across the continent give rise to opportunities for private development on a grand scale, while a lack of local funding provides a platform for new private partnerships with the government.

Doing business in Africa
Economic growth, improved political stability and infrastructure investments are opening previously inaccessible markets, while increased transparency and availability of local partners are helping to improve the ease of doing business. Design Mission Africa is one such way in which the continent endeavours to grow within the real estate industry.

Focused specifically on establishing a smooth pathway for the stakeholders of the real estate and development industry, Design Mission Africa brings real estate buyers and suppliers together to complete current projects in Africa.

Collaboration is the key to success when dealing with projects in Africa, therefore there will be over 600 real estate projects from all over Africa at the summit with over 3 500 pre-scheduled face-to-face meetings.

Design Mission Africa will take place on 17 and 18 November 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa.

Caption:Ravi Kumar, director of IDE, organisers of Design Mission Africa.