Realty Africa clinches US$14m projects

REALTY Africa, a property crowd-funding platform providing investors with informed investment opportunities in Southern Africa, is working on two major projects in Zimbabwe worth US$14 million, which include the Victoria Falls eco hotel.

By Kudzai Kuwaza

ealty Africa co-founder and group CE Patrick Chella

ealty Africa co-founder and group CE Patrick Chella

Crowd-funding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people, usually through the internet.

In an interview with businessdigest this week, Realty Africa co-founder and group CE Patrick Chella (pictured) said he was finalising plans for the Victoria Falls hotel and housing project.

“On the crowd funding, we are reviewing the business plans and financial services for a housing gated community in Harare and we have received all documents for the Victoria Falls eco hotel. These are quite exciting times,” Chella said.

The hotel, which will incorporate innovations based on new Japanese science and is environmentally friendly, is valued at around US$10,5 million. The eco hotel, Chella said, will be a 10-year term investment proposal.

He said the gated community projects, which will consist of 25 residential flats, is valued at US$3,5 million.

“The financials look good from our angle. The next phase is to send this to Deloitte for them to conduct due diligence,” Chella said. “Upon their review, we will then offer the projects to institutions and the general public both locally and abroad. The full prospectus will be made available for those registered on the Realty Africa platform.”

He added that the project developers would offer a return on investment of between 10% and 14% per annum.
“The aim is to send the projects to Deloitte this coming week and all our projects will have the possibility to view in virtual reality,” Chella said.

On the Diaspora Connect product, Chella said those living in the Diaspora looking to build their home will have to find their architect or developer and enter into an agreement, which Realty Africa will have access to. The crowd funding entity will manage the funds on behalf of the funder and get surveyors to check on progress of the homes being built, Chella revealed.

Chella said the funds are multi-currency accounts in Barclays Bank Botswana and will be released in tranches to the developers and only upon verified checks are the funds released for the next phase of the building process.

Chella said the Diaspora funder can register on Realty Africa’s website where upon registration, they will have an online calculation of how much it will cost. He added that the cost is built on a risk matrix per country with the cost being between 5%-8% of the value of the home being built.
The global crowd-funding industry raised US$34,4 billion in 2015.

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