Transformation within the property industry and the growth of the listed property sector in South Africa is set to receive impetus following the finalisation of a R45 million loan agreement between Nedbank Corporate Property Finance and Ascension Properties Limited.
The funds will enable the substantially black-owned and black-managed property income fund to add Swiss House in Marshalltown, Johannesburg to its growing property portfolio for a total asking price of R66 million.
Founded in 2006, Cape based Ascension Properties is a JSE listed fund that focuses on acquiring or investing in commercial office buildings in centrally located areas of South Africa, primarily with a view to supplying demand from government and other empowerment sensitive tenants.
According to Richard Thomas, Cape regional executive for Nedbank Corporate Property Finance, the decision to extend the loan was an easy one to make given the proven business model and well established portfolio of this innovative and entrepreneurial fund.
“As a market leader in South Africa’s commercial property finance industry, Nedbank Corporate Property Finance is absolutely committed to supporting the listed property sector, particularly if that support is for businesses and funds like Ascension, that are proactively promoting and enabling the transformation of the property sector as a whole,” says Thomas.
Since its successful JSE listing in June 2012, Ascension Properties has completed a number of significant transactions involving commercial properties in the Western Cape and Gauteng, all of which have brought the total assets under management by the fund to over R2,2 billion.
The acquisition of Swiss House builds on the value of this well established portfolio. Located on the corner of Main and Simmons Streets in Marshalltown, the property offers 11 219m² over 12 floors, comprising 962m2 of retail space on the ground floor, 10 257m² of fully let office space, currently occupied by Johannesburg Water. It also has 95 parking bays, which are currently reserved for the staff of Johannesburg Water.
“While this is the first time that Nedbank Corporate Property Finance has funded an Ascension Properties acquisition, our two organisations clearly share a similar vision for the future of the country’s property industry and we hope that this will be the beginning of a long relationship that will deliver benefits for all Nedbank and Ascension stakeholders,” concludes Thomas.