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Prime Time upbeat on prospects for 2018

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Property Development Company, Prime Time sees prospects of good returns in 2018 with focus on its retail segment. The company Managing Director Alexander Kelly and Chairman Petronella Matumo said they are looking forward to Pilane Crossing Mall becoming a successful retail centre as tenants have now occupied the space. “In Botswana we look forward to Pilane Crossing becoming a successful retail centre, that it was originally envisaged to be,” states Kelly and Matumo. For its Botswana market, the company started construction at Setlhoa plot with a retail park concept for the home décor and design sector.

Two smaller extensions to existing centres are also underway with a one-shop extension at Sebele Centre and a fast food drive-through at Pilane Crossing where KFC will be opening in early 2018. Kelly and Matumo state in the Company’s 2017 annual report, that things are looking extremely positive for the 2018 financial year with Clicks, Jet, PEP and Ackermans having commenced trading in the final quarter of 2017.

In its year ended August 2017, the company achieved year-on-year increases in both revenues and operating profits before fair value adjustments. Lease revenue grew by 27 percent to P110 million, completed investment property by 34 percent to stand at P1.12 billion and the price per linked unit by four percent to end the year at P3.16.

Kelly and Matumo say the group is well positioned to take advantage of opportunities that may present themselves this year while management team is constantly searching for suitable investments, which will enable them to continue to grow the company and diversify into new markets. “We are pleased with what has been accomplished in the last year and look forward to growing the group further from the platform that has been established,” said Kelly and Matumo. In Zambia the company says demand for space at the newly-acquired Centro Kabulonga mall in Lusaka is strong with a waiting list for space including major regional and national brands. “The results of our geographical diversification into Zambia are now being seen.

“The Zambian operations contributed over 20 percent of the rental income for the current year and over the next few years this will increase significantly,” said Matumo and Kelly.

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Matambo calls on financial sector to pick GDP

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Finance Minister, kenneth Matambo

Finance Minister Kenneth Matambo has announced that government is committed to support financial service sector to prop up the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Currently contributing over 13 percent to GDP, Matambo said the sector has potential to increase its share. “Hence government’s interest in the sector,” said Matambo addressing delegates at the inaugural Botswana Insurance Holdings Limited (BIHL), Global Financial Summit.

The country has built a strong, resilient and fast growing financial sector underpinned by a robust regulatory framework. The finance minister who is expected to step down next year, noted that government’s commitment to the financial service sector has this year been buttressed by a number of laws passed in July relating to money laundering activities.

In addition, Matambo said the continued investment in the development of information, communication and technologies (ICTs) backbone infrastructure is also to support local banks’ rising appetite for online services.

The Minister said the country remains committed to maintaining micro-economic stability to spur private sector participation in the economy. “Our vision is to become a high income country by 2036,” said Matambo, challenging the private sector to step forward and help government to develop the country, bemoaning the low levels of financial inclusion and shallow domestic capital markets.

He said the private sector should come up with more initiatives to develop further the local capital markets. The Minister’s sentiments were also shared by Martin Davies, Managing Director for Emerging Markets and Africa at Deloitte who has challenged the country to start dealing with its low manufacturing value add.

“How do we start to diversify beyond the single commodity economy,” quizzed Davies, adding that manufacturing increase is vital for low inequality across the country.

“Inequality results in bad public policy, as the state starts to believe and think they have to intervene more,” said Davies, highlighting that the country needs to move away from the absolute concept of state drive growth. Meanwhile, minister Matambo has applauded the private sector for leading economic dialogue in the country through events such as the BIHL Global Finance Summit.

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First Lady advises women entrepreneurs

Keikantse Lesemela

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First lady, Neo Masisi

First Lady, Neo Masisi has urged women entrepreneurs to bring change in the economic development of the country and the rest of Africa.

Speaking during the Lioness Lean in Africa breakfast on Friday, Masisi said women entrepreneurs are remarkable engines of economic growth and job creation. “I believe women entrepreneurs hold incredible potential and credentials on the continent because Africa has the highest percentage of women entrepreneurs in the world.

It is projected that millions of much needed jobs will be created over the next decade and these will be created predominantly through small businesses which are mostly run by women,” said Masisi.She highlighted that women entrepreneurs are also the most powerful engine for equitably distributing growth and they are also solutions for addressing inequality on the continent.

“It is a proven fact that for many generations, women understand the simple concept of barter and commerce. These are the role models of our past and our present and they will continue to inspire new generations to do more for business to grow,” she said.

The Lioness Lean In Breakfast Series brings together inspirational and successful women entrepreneurs to share, inspire and connect with the next generation of great women-led start-ups.

The platform is based on a breakfast networking and speaker presentation format, which has been organized in locations across the African continent for the past year by Lionesses of Africa, empowering over one million women entrepreneurs across the continent.

Stanbic Bank Botswana Head of Personal Markets, Omphemetse Dube said they are pleased to bring the Lionesses of Africa Lean In platform to Botswana once again to bring together women entrepreneurs in the country and help to nurture their growth further.

“Botswana is blessed with a number of thriving female entrepreneurs, and the potential for the next generation of talent is strong. Platforms such as this are therefore paramount in growing the cause and we as a bank are proud to help champion that movement further,” said Dube.

Founder and CEO of Lionesses of Africa,Melanie Hawken noted that Gaborone is a growing and exciting centre for women’s entrepreneurship in Africa. “This is a must-attend event for women entrepreneurs in the country as it gives them the opportunity to hear the inspiring entrepreneurial stories of women who are building great businesses here,” she said.

The annual Lionesses of Africa event allows entrepreneurs to benefit from the insights and advice of women entrepreneurs who have seen and experienced it all and to also provide an excellent opportunity for networking.

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