The partnership between veteran black businessman Mike Nkuna and Nedbank Corporate Property Finance is set to deliver another rural based shopping centre in Zebediela which is located in the Limpopo Province.
Nedbank said consumers in the rural village of Moletlane are set to benefit from a conveniently-located new shopping precinct called Zebediela Plaza.
Nedbank has finance and taken equity in the 15 016m² development. This adds to a trail of developments in historically marginalised areas, townships and rural communities, which have been rolled out by the partnership between Nedbank and Nkuna’s Masingita Property Investment Holdings.
Located on the R519 between Roedtan and Zebediela, Zebediela Plaza is the brainchild of Masingita, which already holds a significant retail portfolio that includes Masingita Mall in Giyani, Jabulani Mall in Soweto, and the recently completed Protea Glen Mall, also in Soweto.
Ken Reynolds, regional executive of Nedbank Corporate Property Finance in Gauteng, said the decision by Nedbank to finance and invest in the development was a relatively easy one to make given the excellent location of the proposed centre and the proven strength and historical success of the development team which, in addition to MPIH, includes Vlaming Construction, ICS, and LPA Architects.
“The proposed site for the retail development, with its high visibility and easy access to commuters, will undoubtedly see Zebediela Plaza become a major shopping destination for the vast majority of consumers in the area. The tenant selection has been designed to cater for the specific needs of the people in the surrounding areas, and this aligns the vision of Zebediela Plaza with the commitment of Nedbank Corporate Property Finance to fund sustainable developments that promote rural economic development and growth by benefiting communities,” says Reynolds.
Reynolds adds that this concept of community support was a key driver in Nedbank’s decision to involve itself in the project, as the bank firmly believes that the construction of Zebediela Plaza will add significant value to the lives of residents of the area.
“The closest formal retail centre to the site where the Plaza will be located is in Lebowakgomo, some 27 kilometres away, which means that the people of Mokopane and surrounds currently have to undertake a round trip journey of over 50km to do their basic shopping.”
He points out that these long distances can add significantly to the living costs of individuals and communities in the area – the vast majority of who fall within the lower income brackets of the economy – which is why Nedbank believes that the development of a convenient and affordable local shopping precinct will add value to their lives. In addition, he highlights the potential held by the new shopping centre for long-term job creation as a key factor in Nedbank’s decision to invest in its success.
The viability and value of the retail development is further enhanced by the fact that the town planners have already approved plans for the construction of approximately 400 new residential dwellings in the immediate vicinity of Zebediela Plaza during 2013 and 2014.
Construction on Zebediela Plaza is scheduled for completion November 2013.