Enacy Mapakame Property Reporter
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) listed property firms last week recovered from losses they incurred in the first half of the year with gains sustained by increased demand experienced across the bourse.
All the four listed property concerns except for Dawn, recorded significant gains last week. There was frenzied buying on the bourse following policy pronouncements the previous week that separated nostro FCA accounts and RTGS FCA accounts.
This resulted in an unprecedented demand for equities as investors unwound RTGS balances for securities.
First Mutual Properties (FMP), Mashonaland Holdings and Zimre Property Investment (ZPI) rose 72 percent to 10,36 cents, 25 percent to 3,34 cents and 71 percent to 3,25 cents respectively.
Dawn remained flat at 2,45 cents. Construction and associated industries firm — Masimba Holdings gained 43 percent to 9,84 cents.
For ZPI, its $13 million Sawanga Shopping Mall, which is currently under construction in Victoria Falls, is expected to be operational by December this year, well ahead of the formerly proposed timeline.
Profit for the year up to June dipped by 68 percent to $197 397 from $613 526 recorded in the prior comparable period whilst the company’s revenue decreased by 41,3 percent to $1,5 million from last year’s $2,6 million.
Cement manufacturers, PPC and Lafarge rose 49 percent to $1,78 and $1,50 respectively. The only listed brick making firm, Willdale maintained prior week’s levels of 0,67 cents.
Property firms, particularly commercial have been battling voids especially in the Central Business Districts as companies downsize operations while others look for cheaper options outside the CBD.
This has resulted in a slowdown in rental income as tenants negotiate for downward reviews of rent.
But it’s not all doom and gloom for the sector as they are anticipated to cash in on the various housing and institutional property development projects lined up across the country.
For the commercial property sector comprising of retail and office space, as well as industrial property, its growth will, however, be underpinned on the general performance of the economy.
While there has been a general increase in voids in the central business district as companies opt for cheaper premises elsewhere, the anticipated growth in other key sectors of the economy such as agriculture, mining, tourism and manufacturing is expected to boost construction.