When West Hills Mall opens in Ghana’s capital Accra, it will become the largest single-phase modern shopping centre in the city. Construction has begun, with WBHO Ghana appointed as main contractor.
Atterbury, in conjunction with the Social Security National Insurance Trust of Ghana (SSNIT) and Nasec, a local Ghanaian developer, is developing the 30 000sqm West Hills Mall, to open in October 2014.
Designed for excellent access and visibility, the R900 million (US$96 million) West Hills Mall is on the Cape Coast motorway in west Accra. West Hills is a 30-minute drive from the Accra CBD, and forms the gateway into the Greater Accra Region from Western Ghana.
James Ehlers, Managing Director of Atterbury Property Developments, says: “West Hills is a rapidly developing middleclass residential node in a city with a growing population of over 3 million people. It reflects the growth in urbanisation and consumerism in this politically and economically stable oil-rich country.”
Ehlers adds: “Ghana is benefiting from a new emerging middle class. Accra is the hub of retail in the country, yet modern shopping malls still represent a small proportion of Accra’s retail market. With its growing prosperity and population, Accra has great capacity to support more formal retail. West Hills Mall will bring top national and international retailers to this increasingly sophisticated consumer market.”
Even before opening, West Hills Mall is proving to have remarkable clout.
South African retail heavyweight Shoprite has confirmed pride of place as anchor tenant of West Hills Mall. Other South African retailers including Woolworths, Mr Price and Truworths have also secured their position in the mall.
“We have received enthusiastic leasing interest, even beyond our expectations. Leasing is progressing strongly, with a good balance of local and South African tenants” says Ehlers.
Construction of West Hills Mall began in December 2012.
This is Atterbury’s second large venture in Ghana, and a key step in Atterbury Group’s focused approach to African expansion through Atterbury Africa Limited.
Atterbury Africa purchased a 47% interest in the successful Accra Mall in Ghana and is planning to develop further shopping centres there. It is also acquiring land in the Achimota area in northern Accra and Tema to the East.
“Ghana meets our investment criteria of a country that can offer stability and sustainability of growth. We have great confidence in Ghana,” says Ehlers. “Right now, there’s an opportunity to expand into this growing market. Our investment in Ghana furthers Atterbury’s goals of providing excellent total returns to investors. It also helps achieve a healthy measure of international geographic diversification in our portfolio.”
Atterbury develops and owns quality shopping centres in Africa. It is also looking at other projects in Mozambique, Angola and Zambia and Namibia.
Atterbury launched its African expansion with the successful development of the 40,000sqm Bagatelle – Mall of Mauritius, which opened in September 2011.
This leading South African property investment and development company looks for three ingredients in every one of its African investments.
“We work with South African retailers to promote their expansion needs. We target countries that can accommodate several investments. We also join forces with local partners with knowledge in African trade and financing, while contributing our own property expertise,” says Ehlers. “Collaboration and critical mass create a hard-hitting combination essential for commercial success for all development stakeholders.”
West Hills Mall meets all the criteria to go the distance. “We are excited to bring this quality modern formal shopping to Accra,” says Ehlers.