Real Estate: Latest News
Dana Sanchez, 9:50 pm
For ambitious young U.S. soldiers seeking leadership, a deployment in Africa is hard to beat. And that means being based in Djibouti. Djibouti’s status as a stable country in an otherwise volatile region is an asset worth millions of dollars in rent. Djibouti enjoys a lucrative role as a landlord. The U.S. pays $63 million a year to rent its base at Camp Lemonnier. China is building a base 8 miles away, and will be paying $100 million for theirs.
Kevin Mwanza, 9:05 am
Hilton Worldwide, a leading global luxury hotel chain, will build its first modular and tallest hotels in Ghana and Kenya as it seeks to expand its presence in three more countries across Africa. The move is part of the hotel’s plan to increase its chains from the current 39 outlets to more than 80 in Africa, in the next five years. “We remain hugely committed to Africa across our portfolio of world-class brands, continuing to introduce our hotels to new markets across the whole of sub-Saharan Africa in the coming years,”
Ann Brown, 5:28 pm AFKI Original
The entire African tech startup community was shocked in June 2014 when Carey Eaton, co-founder of the largest online classifieds company in Africa, was murdered. A month earlier, Eaton had acquired a stake in BuyRentKenya, which has grown into one of Kenya’s most popular property listing sites. BuyRentKenya co-founder Jamie Pujara talked to AFKInsider about his relationship with Eaton and how BuyRentKenya is doing.
Kevin Mwanza, 10:30 am
Kenya, East Africa’s biggest economy is set to get its second six-lane highway through a joint-partnership with the US government to upgrade the 485-kilometer highway from Nairobi to the port city of Mombasa. The US Export-Import Bank and Bechtel, one of the leading construction and engineering firms will fund the project. The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (Opic) will act as guarantor against any possible breach of the agreement by Bechtel,
Dana Sanchez, 3:21 pm AFKI Original
Online retail is still small by global standards in much of Africa, but it’s growing fast thanks to increased penetration of smartphones. E-commerce in Africa is expected to be worth $50 billion in 2018, up from US$8 billion in 2013. There’s rising demand for warehouse space by manufacturers seeking to expand in Africa. Knight Frank singled out landlocked Zambia as one of the most promising logistics locations in sub-Sahara, thanks to its geographical position at the intersection of Southern, Eastern and Central Africa.
Kevin Mwanza, 7:44 am
Dangote Cement, owned by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, now controls 22 percent of the market in Tanzania since it launched operations in June as its low cost cement continues to upset companies that have for years dominated the East African market. Lafarge Holcim of France which is the biggest producer in Africa controls the biggest share of the East African market with a 27 percent; Tororo Cement of Uganda has 21 percent; while ARM Cement has 17 percent.
Julia Austin, 1:22 pm AFKI Original
A byword for luxury, the Serena brand offers an opulent experience at the Serengeti safari lodge inside the national park. Based on traditional tribal design, the huts melt into the landscape. Once you’ve had your fill of safaris and fossils at the nearby Ol Duvai archaeological site, you can relax at the vanishing pool and gaze out on the endless Serengeti plains.
Dana Sanchez, 12:04 pm
The Chinese have entered many sectors of the economy under Zimbabwe’s Look East policy, but until recently avoided white-owned farms liberated by Mugabe. Chinese are now investing in tobacco production, growing it on formerly white-owned farms, and paying rent to landowners who were given farms seized by Zimbabwe’s ruling Zanu-PF. Mugabe’s disastrous land reforms caused agricultural production to nosedive. Now there are plenty of jobs in the tobacco-growing district, a worker said.
Kurt Davis Jr., 8:52 am AFKI Original
Many Kenyans worry a crash may be coming. Bubble advocates stress the near-30 percent annual growth rate in real estate since 2011, but occupancy rates are stable and high at 90 percent. Residential housing demand has always outpaced supply, particularly in lower- to middle-income segments of the market. The reality is most housing constructed in Kenya in the last five years is unaffordable to most Kenyans. Less than 10 percent can afford a mortgage. A local land price index shows that land and property returns in Kenya are outperforming treasury bills, bonds and stocks.
Kevin Mwanza, 8:55 am
China Wu Yi, a leading Chinese construction and engineering company, is set to make an unprecedented profit of $85 million from upgrading a 25 kilometer stretch of road, the company revealed in a statement to its directors. The revelation explains in part why many Chinese companies are scrambling for projects in Africa. The profits China Wu Yi expects are over 100 percent of the estimated projects cost and more than the international net margins of about two percent for similar projects
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