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A view from the top

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This week Khumo Property Asset Manage- ment will be celebrating ten years of exis- tence and business operations within the property asset management sphere.

Compared to property management, which focuses on managing the actual building such as the tenants and leases and repairs and maintenance, property asset man- agement is about creating and managing the wealth related to the property or a portfolio of properties on behalf of clients.

Asset managers have a clearer view of the property dynamics and advise clients on how best to increase the value of their property portfolios through assessment of the type of tenants to occupy the property; performance of the prop- erty, if it is profitable or not and whether the client should ‘acquire, hold or dispose’. A good return, exploiting the value of the property and reducing the risk to the client is the ultimate goal of the property asset manager.

At times they may recom- mend that a client ‘change their land use’ to position themselves to better optimise on the location they occupy for example changes may be caused by the direction of growth of the town or city. The CEO of Khumo Property Asset Management, Outule Bale, has been with the company since 2007 and is at the helm of an organisation that now manages properties or assets worth over P2 billion through a staff compliment that is now 100 percent Botswana citizens. These range from commercial, retail, hotel and residential properties.

Bale observes that most of the past ten years the Botswana property market has been buoyant. “In the last two years there has been a bit of a slowdown. We have also seen an oversupply in the ‘commercial’ market,” he adds. The commercial market he refers to are the office properties which seem to have sprung up almost overnight in areas such as the Fairgrounds, Finance Park and the new Gaborone CBD. The asset man- ager is confident that when the economy improves the property market will also improve.

Similarly, retail property development has been phenomenal in the last 10 years. Shopping Malls for example Riverwalk and Game City where developed during the years 2001 and 2002. In the last six years Rail Park Mall, Airport Junction, Sebele Mall, Northgate were opened. The CEO advises that, “Investment decisions in these and other property sectors should be preceded by careful analysis of the environment and other important factors that influence viabilities and feasibilities.”

Bale also points out that development has not only been limited to the commercial sector, that other property sectors have also seen significant progress. For instance, lately there has been notice- able development activity in the hotel sector. “Some of the sectors should now be reaching equilibrium, where demand equals supply,” observes Bale.

“Without any major new economic activities, there will be possibilities of recycling of tenants. Tenants will vacate and relocate to newer properties that offer modern amenities and are at the same time competitive in prices.” Bale explains that for the older properties to survive this pending risk they need to ‘reinvent’ and ‘relive’ themselves. This is one of the roles that Khumo plays on behalf of clients through its development arm.

Khumo Prop- erty Asset Management has over the last ten years participated in property developments all geared at optimising value and wealth for clients.

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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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