There's bucks to be made in Urban Renewal

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The planned acquisition deal between Rand Merchant Bank Holdings (RMH) and Propertuity, has boosted investor confidence in the Johannesburg central business district (CBD). The planned acquisition deal between Rand Merchant Bank Holdings (RMH) and Propertuity, has boosted investor confidence in the Johannesburg central business district (CBD).

The bravest investors are now starting to look at property in areas where, up until recently, only slumlords took interest — Central Johannesburg is a prime example.

Johannesburg’s CBD, Braamfontein and Newtown nodes are showing significant evidence of inner-city renewal, with business sentiment and perceptions of the areas improving over the last couple of years.

Much of downtown Johannesburg has been regenerated and the area offers a variety of art, architecture, entertainment, food and more. Shopping has now been added to the list. The R1.3-billion Newtown Junction, headed up by Attacq Limited and Atterbury Property Holdings, is one of biggest multi-use developments to open in Johannesburg's CBD since the Carlton Centre in the 1970s.

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Following investment in property group, Atterbury, Rand Merchant Bank Holdings (RMH) announced last month, that it had made a 34% investment in urban renewal property developer, Propertuity — for an undisclosed amount.

Propertuity is the company that developed and manages the hip Maboneng District in Joburg. The company expanded since 2009 with one building valued at R15 million to having a portfolio worth over R1 billion today. it has focused on the redevelopment of dilapidated buildings in Johannesburg and Durban and owns 70 properties in both cities.

CEO Jonathan Liebmann has said he also wants to acquire assets in the Pretoria CBD. Liebmann created the cultural site Arts on Main and expanded it into the Maboneng precinct which has become a living space for urbanists. The precinct has office, retail, and residential space, as well as a cinema, theatre, and restaurants.

The planned acquisition deal between RMB Holdings and Propertuity, has boosted investor confidence in the Johannesburg central business district (CBD).

“We are very excited to announce our second transaction to further diversify RMH’s earnings base through investing into the breadth of the property value chain. The company has an extremely entrepreneurial and talented management team that remains invested in the business,” said RMH CEO Herman Bosman.

Liebmann added: “We are very pleased that RMH will become a significant shareholder in Propertuity. Their investment will create the foundation for our next phase of growth, which will see us further developing Johannesburg and Durban cities, as well as looking for opportunities in new cities.”

In May, RMH acquired a 25.01% interest in developer Atterbury, which is behind SA’s new mega shopping centre, Mall of Africa. The value of the acquisition has not been disclosed.

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Johannesburg Property Market  |  Durban Property Market  |  Pretoria Property Market  |  Atterbury Property Group  |  Newtown Junction  |  Rand Merchant Bank (RMB)  |  Maboneng Precinct  |  Propertuity  |  Jonathan Liebmann  |  Mall of Africa  |  Attacq Limited  |  Herman Bosman  |  Carlton Centre  |  RMB Holdings Limited (RMH)