Advancing Accra’s newest cohort of grade A office developments



Eris Property Group began life in 2008, emerging out of the ashes of RMB Properties, a prominent property development and services company which had served the South African sector since 1987. Carrying the flame of RMB, Eris has progressed into a leading provider of commercial property services across South African and sub-Saharan markets.


The company’s transition beyond the borders of South Africa began when it recently came on board with a real estate private equity fund called the Momentum Africa Real Estate Fund (MAREF), which focuses on real estate investments across five sub-Saharan countries enjoying rapid development within their market economies.


Consequently, Eris recently established a local presence in Ghana, one of the five countries supported by the MAREF, with the West African nation highlighted as an auspicious hub for the firm’s ongoing sub-Saharan property development strategy. With a number of exceptional developments set to be unveiled in the near future Enoch Entsua-Mensah, CEO of Eris Properties Ghana, cuts a profoundly enthusiastic figure talking to ABN.


Stable foundations


Still at the foundation stage of its company story, Eris Properties Ghana is currently focused on property development and advisory services along with leasing services in the country. In particular, the firm has focused the majority of its resources on property development services towards its flagship Accra projects – 335 Place and SU Tower.


However, it is the long-term objective of Eris Properties Ghana to imitate the multitude of property services offered by its South Africa-based parent firm, once its initial flagship projects are complete and suitably embedded into the Ghanaian property market.


The services eventually offered by Eris will include property assets management, retail services, listed sector and investments, trading and investments, investment broking, property valuations and facilities management, along with the services it offers to the national market.


“Full property management activities will commence on completion of the two [Accra] projects,” says Entsua-Mensah.


“We firmly believe by the completion of these projects, the market will understand the immense knowledge and skill we bring to Ghana, which should create a greater willingness to deal with us again on other related commercial property services.”


335 Place


The first of two grade A Eris office developments in Accra is named 335 Place, located in North Dzorwulu, an area which has become known as the cities oil and gas enclave, with major regional players such as Tullow Oil, Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation (BOST) and Ghana Petroleum Commission, all having operational bases in the region.


Additionally, close by to the development is Airport City, an urban development area which has been subject to a significant figure of investment, from real estate to its commercial and retail industries.


335 Place promises to become the region’s newest and sleekest office development, with the finished article set to offer 9,985m² of leasable office space over 12 floors, along with 380 parking bays.


However, the US$40.2 million project will not only resemble the latest high-tech, sustainably developed addition to Ghana’s business district, but also sits in extreme close proximity to the N1/Accra-Tema Motorway/George W Bush highway, along with Kotoka International Airport.


The ideal nature of 335 Place’s location will subsequently enable the development to evolve into a hive of commercial activity, with clients and investors from not just Accra, but around the world able to convene at the office with utmost ease. The possible business-inducing rewards of its location are untold.


Site location is a crucial part of Eris Ghana’s property development strategies, which is confirmed by 335’s positioning, not only being well-served by existing transport links, but also close to recently constructed retail and leisure developments, such as Accra Mall and Fiesta Royale Hotel.


“In site location, strong consideration is given to accessibility and proximity to amenities and facilities that complement work lifestyle, for instance restaurants, shopping centres, community schools and bus terminals, and 335 Place has been a perfect example of this.”


Construction work at the site is progressing well, as piling works relating to the substructure development were recently completed, with the next phase of construction work on the ground floor commencing.


335 Place is currently on track for a completion date of August 2018.


SU Tower


Eris Ghana’s second landmark Accra development, named SU Tower, will sit proudly in the very heart of the capital’s financial district when the ribbon is finally cut in November 2018.


A uniquely designed 12-story A grade office, SU Tower is set to become the jewel in the crown of Accra’s vibrant business region, with its prime location once again a crucial contributing factor towards the bubbling excitement generating around the project.


“When you look at the design of the tower, the fact that it is 12-stories means that the building will become a very imposing feature of the area.


“Combine this with the unique nature of its location and you begin to see why the excitement is building,” exclaims Entsua-Mensah.


SU Tower is located alongside a double arterial roadway, which will allow for motorists to conveniently navigate traffic depending on the situation or time of the day, expediting the daily commute of employees working at the building.


Furthermore, the design of SU Tower has incorporated a structured parking system within the core of the building, allowing for employees to park inside the confines of the building before travelling up to their respective offices, as opposed to parking outside the workplace.


“We want efficiency and productivity to be at its best within these work places, which is why particular consideration has been given to parking within the projects.


“Saving tenants time in getting parking slots every morning has been an enduring matter of concern throughout the entire development process.


“We at Eris Ghana like to assist businesses by helping them understand the value of ways in which an office design can contribute to a successful business through economy and improving the performances of its people.”


Instigating economic growth


Prior to around 2013/14, led by a rapidly developing business sector in Accra, Ghana was viewed as a stand-out model for African growth, with a strong GDP driven by gold, cocoa and oil exports.


However, around three years ago the Ghanaian economy dipped as the nation became afflicted by a growing public deficit, high inflation and a weakening currency.


But upon receiving a monetary aid programme from the IMF and stabilising its macroeconomic sector, promising growth levels returned in 2016. With Ghana’s GDP set to reach 7.5% in 2018, Eris is well placed to contribute to this economic revival with the finalising of its 335 Place and SU Tower developments.


Furthermore, Ghana (and Accra in particular) remains to be an increasingly attractive business destination, on a continental and worldwide scale.


“Notwithstanding the economic slowdown particularly in the last two years, Accra is still experiencing sustained interest from international and local companies wishing to enter and expand their market; they require world class commercial office space.”


This is exactly what Eris will provide with its landmark Accra developments, which will act as a homing beacon for international commerce, bringing greater economic advancement to the city.


“I firmly believe the addition of these projects speak volumes about the direction we believe the Ghanaian economy is headed in,” gleams Entsua-Mensah.


“There is a growing optimism that things are on the right trajectory though it may take a little while.


“Demand for well thought offices will become even greater in the next two to three years, and Eris is well poised to take advantage of this with our landmark Accra developments, along with some additional projects in our pipeline.”


Not only is Eris providing a platform for commercial and economic development with its two grade A office developments, 335 Place and SU Tower will also become a symbol of pride for the people of Accra, as the city solidifies its position amongst Africa’s elite business destinations.


With Eris Properties Ghana set to deliver an exciting flurry of projects over the next few years, Entsua-Mensah finds himself in a bullish mood regarding the success that Eris will bring to Ghana.


“When you take a careful look at the Accra Skyline, you can gradually see the changes that are afoot.


“We are about to deliver two grade A properties to Accra with an even greater supply pipeline. Ghana does not yet have the investment property portfolio of South Africa, but we’re on the right path.


“There is a lot of both foreign and local interest in the property sectors. Before investors were just watching but now they are jumping head first into projects.”