Braving unchartered territory

In 2003, powerhouse Ms. Noluthando Gosa founded Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd, with its first subsidiary being Akhona Properties (Pty) Ltd, which at the time, was literally one of only a handful of black-owned property management companies in SA and the only black women owned and managed. Akhona Properties specifically serviced the retail, commercial and industrial sectors. Due to sheer tenacity and an uncompromising approach to business ethics, the company soon offered a turnkey property management solution to a league of blue-chip institutions in both public and private sectors, which was all executed in record time. This included the likes of the Public Investment Corporation (SOC) Ltd, Pareto, the JSE-listed Investec Properties and the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA).

Partnering with one of the best, to become one of the best

In 2007, Ms. Gosa saw an opportunity to take Akhona Group’s growth to the next level through a two-tiered approach. Firstly, by selling Akhona Properties to one of South Africa’s leading property management companies, Broll Property Group. And secondly, by forming a 50:50 joint venture with Broll to establish Akhona Broll. As a result of the partnership, a multitude of new contracts were concluded and Akhona Broll, which exists to this day, currently manages a property portfolio in excess of R1.5 billion.

The paradigm shift from property management to property investment

Later in 2004, Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd made a decision to shift its strategic focus from property management to property investment. To this end, Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd joined hands with a business consortium to acquire a R450 million stake in the JSE-listed Vukile Property Fund. In 2007, Vukile was also listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange and in 2013, Vukile became the first company to be awarded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) status by the JSE Limited.

Rising into a fully-fledged investment holding company

The final step to convert Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd into a fully-fledged investment holding company, was the group’s acquisition of 20% of shares in Broll Property Group in 2007. Today, Broll is one of Africa’s leading commercial services companies with offices in all major cities in South Africa with established operations across Africa and a strategic affiliation with CBRE Group, which is the largest commercial real estate services and investment firm in the world. Akhona was instrumental in assisting Broll with the expansion into key African markets.
To minimise risk and position Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd for consistent and continued future growth, Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd purposefully commenced with hunting down investment opportunities outside of the property sector. The first opportunity arose in 2011, when Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd was part of a consortium that bought a stake in Kellogg, Brown and Roots (KBR) South Africa. KBR is a former subsidiary of the Texas-based Halliburton and a global provider of differentiated professional services and technologies to energy, government and hydrocarbon sectors in 75 different countries.

Leading a flagship BEE investment in ArcelorMittal

In 2016, one of Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd’s subsidiaries, Akhona Resources, led the wholly black owned broad-based consortium Likamva Resources in the flagship acquisition of a 17% stake worth R2,3bn in the SA subsidiary of the global steel giant, ArcelorMittal. Akhona Resources is the largest shareholder in Likamva Resources. As part of its own commitment to transformation, the consortium agreed to issue 5% of its holding to a community trust within 2 years of the acquisition. The beneficiaries of the trust will come from communities in the South African areas where ArcelorMittal SA has major operations, such as Vanderbijlpark, New Castle, Saldanha and Tshwane. This commitment is in line with the spirit in which the deal was concluded, for the sake of transforming and revitalising the entire steel industry.

Ideally positioned for future prospects

Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd’s founder and Executive Chairperson, Ms. Noluthando Gosa, was one of the Commissioners of South Africa’s current National Development Plan (NDP): A vision for the country’s economic growth to 2030. As a result, she has first-hand insights of the country’s growth priorities identified in the plan, which identified the reindustrialisation of the SA economy as a key pillar for economic growth and job creation. In all industrialised economies, steel is the backbone and Akhona’s investment in the steel sector was partly informed by this vision. Underpinned by this knowledge, and in addition to investing in the property sector, Akhona Group (Pty) Ltd currently has a special interest in investing in businesses in the logistics, manufacturing and industrial sectors in general. Reason being, that this forms the engine of job creation and economic growth, not only locally, but also for stable economies worldwide. Click here to subscribe to our newsletter , to remain in the loop of any new developments or opportunities within Akhona Group(Pty) Ltd.

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