Stanbic Bank to use expertise to drive commercial property projects

•   Stanbic Heights in Accra.

• Stanbic Heights in Accra.

Stanbic Ghana, a subsidiary of Standard Bank Group of South Africa, says it is set to further use its expertise in financing commercial property projects to drive the growing commercial property sector in Ghana.

“The Stanbic team together with the Standard Bank Group’s real estate team is one of the most experienced and Africa is able to bring a host of knowledge and expertise for raising finance for a full range of property projects, including large scale commercial office developments, shopping malls among others,” Head of Investment Banking at Stanbic Bank, Mr. Randolph Rodrigues said.

Speaking in an interview with a section of the media in Accra he said the bank had already demonstrated its expertise and capacity by supporting and financing a number of landmark projects in Ghana.

He mentioned Movenpick Ambassador Hotel in Accra, the Accra Mall and West Hills Mall, Stanbic Heights, One Airport Square among others as some of the landmark projects financed by the bank.

Mr. Rodrigues said the bank had developed a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) model which ensures a steady repayment of debt on schedule.

“We create an SPV which holds all the assets of the development — the land title, the property owners — are all ring-fenced and the proceeds from rental are paid to the SPV. Before development, we get sufficient tenant uptake. This way, the building does not lie idle that can make repayment a challenge,” he said.

The mode he said was a marked departure from the practice in the market which leaves many commercial properties lie either, uncompleted or idle.

“With a real estate loan book of about US$140 million since 2007, we are looking forward to invest more in the sector, bringing investors, both equity, debt and property title holders together to create an opportunity where it finances the business, using sustainable project structuring models, drawing on expertise within the local office of the bank as well as from other relevant offshore offices,” he said.

Mr. Rodrigues expressed optimism about the prospects of Ghana’s real estate industry adding that, “We expect the boom in the industry to continue.”

He attributed the boom in the country’s real estate sector to the sustained economic performance since 2000, an increasing number of people in the middle class, investor attention on Ghana and the availability of finance and capital.

He said the bank’s unique financing arrangement had won it several awards adding that more were expected.

Stanbic Bank Ghana won five of the 10 country specific awards. They are Best Overall Bank in Ghana; Best Equity Finance Bank in Ghana; Best Debt Capital Markets Bank in Ghana; Best Loan Finance Bank in Ghana and Best M&A Advisory Bank in Ghana, for their unique project management model and financing vehicle.

The bank has also won similar awards with EMEA Finance Best Investment Finance in Ghana  2015 for its real estate financing activities.

The Standard Bank Group, the parent company of Stanbic, was voted the Best Overall Bank in Africa in the 2015 Euromoney Real Estate Survey Awards.

Standard Bank also received several additional awards in recognition of its ability to tailor solutions for clients in an increasingly complex marketplace.

Accolades for real estate across Africa included Best Overall Bank in Africa; Best Loan Finance Bank in Africa; Best Equity Finance Bank in Africa; Best M&A Advisory Bank in Africa and Best Debt Capital Markets Bank in Africa.

Mr. Rodrigues said the bank remained committed to supporting infrastructural development in the country and improving the lives of Ghanaians.

By David Adadevoh

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