Real estate firm Fusion Capital has ventured into the Rwandan market by investing in a new Sh4 billion project in Kigali. The project, which is a nine-storey block, is situated directly opposite Kigali Convention Centre next to the Radisson Blu hotel.
Fusion Capital Real Estate Executive Director Daniel Kamau said the building has already attracted players in the banking sector as well as in the retail industry, with some early customers including Java House, Deacons, Bosini, Eco Bank, Zuchinni, Bold in Africa and Simba supermarket.
Mr Kamau said the retail space is 91 per cent let, while the office space is 48 per cent occupied. Commenting about the Kenyan firm’s entry into Rwanda, President Paul Kagame said: “This project is following through on what the struggle was about – a developed and prosperous Rwanda. Government will continue to be involved in business to ensure people thrive, invest, and feel their businesses and themselves are secure. When you succeed, we succeed. That is why business is government’s business.”
In March this year, the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) gave Fusion a go-ahead to issue two Development Real Estate Investments Trusts (D-REITS). Fusion had planned to raise Sh2.3 billion. The firm had intended to use the funds to put up a Sh10 billion shopping mall in Meru called the Greenwood city. The rest of the money was to be raised privately.
However, five months later in August, the firm’s Chief Executive Luke Kinoti announced that the D-REIT issue had failed. The firm managed to achieve only a 38 per cent subscription, collecting Sh873 million with only four investors being interested in the project out of the seven required by CMA.
The regulator required Fusion Capital to raise at least half of the initial gross proceeds it had targeted through a D-REIT, before it could qualify for listing in the Real Estate Investment Trusts. Apart from the latest entry into the Rwandan market, the firm also has other real estate interests in Ethiopia and Tanzania.