Ecobank launches property fund

Pan African Banking group Ecobank has, through its asset management firm, Ecobank Asset Management, launched a US$10 million property fund to give investors a wider option and alternative investment vehicle to traditional asset management products.

Report by Clive Mphambela

Presenting a keynote paper entitled Property Investments Platforms and Vehicles at a property investments seminar arranged by the Zimbabwe Association of Pension Funds (ZAPF) in Harare recently, Ecobank Asset Management MD Yona Banda said the fund was targetted at high net-worth individuals and institutional investors looking for exposure in the property sector, but lacked the financial capacity to buy into diverse residential properties or management capability to manage a large number of residential properties.

The unique fund, which Banda said had been named PropFund, had been structured as an open-ended fund in which investors could invest and divest during the fund’s tenure.

The fund, however, has been structured with a set investment horizon of five years during which fund managers expect a significant correction to have taken place in the property sector.

According to Banda, the fund had already attracted US$2 million in committed investments.

She said PropFund would require a minimum investment of US$20 000 from individuals and US$50 000 from institutional investors.
“We want to offer investors liquidity, diversification and an instrument that does not directly correlate with shares listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange,” Banda said.