Harambee Sacco bets on AfDB real estate deal to reach 1 billion in assets


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Harambee Sacco bets on AfDB real estate deal to reach 1 billion shillings


A construction site in Nairobi. PHOTO FILE | NMG

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summary

  • Harambee Investment Cooperative Society (HICS) is in talks with the African Development Bank (AfDB) for an entry into real estate.
  • The investment vehicle of the giant Harambee Sacco seeks to get into real estate beyond the acquisition and sale of land.

Harambee Investment Cooperative Society (HICS) is in talks with the African Development Bank (AfDB) to enter real estate as it seeks to increase its asset base to over 1 billion shillings by the end of the year.

The investment vehicle of the giant Harambee Sacco seeks to venture into real estate beyond the acquisition and sale of land that it has been doing since its creation in 2014.

The company which largely serves the disciplined forces has acquired and sold more than 200 acres in three years, bringing its total asset base as of December 2020 to 616 million shillings.

“We are negotiating a partnership with the African Development Bank (AfDB) to ensure that we provide affordable housing for members with the aim of reaching the asset base of over 1 billion shillings by the end of the year. HICS President Macloud Malonza said at the company’s sixth annual general meeting.

He said the plan is to give the 596 members of society the ability to use the land they buy.

HICS paid its shareholders 8 million shillings, or 15% dividends and 10% interest on deposits for the year up to December 2020.

“This is the first time in three years (since 2017) that we are paying dividends and interest on deposits to our members,” he said. The company’s first project was for 10 acres in Kantafu along Kangundo Road, Nairobi, in 2019, which was followed by the acquisition of 40 acres in Nakuru, another 20 acres in Kantafu and 145.5 acres in Eldoret.

A total of 370 title deeds had been issued by the end of 2020, making HICS one of the fastest growing investment cooperatives in the country. HICS Acting Managing Director Gichuki Kabukuru noted that the sale of the Eldoret project had been slow due to the movement restrictions of Covid-19.

“People normally want to see something tangible and the Covid restrictions prohibited us from taking members to the ground to see beacons,” he said.

Covid restrictions and delays in the land register saw deeds take more than four months to be awarded after purchase.


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