A successful first year of trading for Dipula's co-owned Eyethu Orange Farm Mall

Izak Petersen, CEO of Dipula Income Fund.

Attracting over one million shoppers each month this year, Eyethu Orange Farm Mall has built a strong, successful trading record since it opened a year ago, on 28 October 2014.

The 27,000sqm Eyethu Orange Farm Mall has recorded consistent growth month-on-month since opening, and earned enthusiastic support from its local community.

The Orange Farm community owns a 10% stake in the mall. Its co-owners are JSE-listed REIT Dipula Income Fund and its developers Flanagan & Gerard Property Development & Investment and Stretford Land Developments, each of which hold 30% of the mall’s ownership.

Eyethu Orange Farm Mall’s excellent location and accessibility for customers is a key driver of its success. It links directly to the Stretford Railway Station and neighbouring major taxi rank, and is ideally positioned at the heart of Orange Farm’s new central business district.

Izak Petersen, CEO of Dipula, reports that Eyethu Orange Farm Mall is proving a good asset for the fund, serving its chosen market. It has also become so much more than your average commuter centre.

Petersen says: “The mall’s popularity with the local community is obvious from the excellent support it receives. It is trading well generally and the most popular trade categories are food and fashion, but we’re also seeing a growing demand for family entertainment, especially on weekends.”

He adds: “This shows the community sees the mall as more than convenient shopping on the way to and from work. They see it as fulfilling an important social and leisure role. To meet this demand, we’re considering expanding the mall’s choice of restaurants.”

Petersen adds that as Eyethu Orange Farm Mall gets to know and understand its shoppers better, it is constantly cultivating a better retail mix to meet the expectations of consumers in its 90-plus stores, with a strong national tenant mix.

This month will see new stores opening at the mall, including fashion retailer Webbers and shoe store Tekkie Town. Rage Clothing will introduce its clothing and shoe ranges to Eyethu Orange Farm Mall in December. The centre’s Nedbank branch is also expanding to meet client needs.

“It has been an exciting year, and extremely rewarding to see the mall’s overall shopper numbers and trading grow,” says Petersen. “We are confident that Eyethu Orange Farm Mall will continue to go from strength-to-strength as it serves the needs of its community even better.”