• Tuesday, March 05, 2024
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Retail market boost underway as Purplestone Mall berths in Abuja


The Nigerian retail market will, in the next couple of months, receive a major boost as Berverly & Sam Properties will be launching its upscale Purplestone Mall  Abuja into the market with not only a new development proposition but also a new shopping experience that will be pocket-friendly.

Major Nigerian cities, especially Lagos and Abuja have,  in recent time, seen what seems a revolution in the retail segment of the real estate market driven by the country’s encouraging demographics, changing household shopping culture, strong buying power and high consumer spend coming from the upper and emerging middle class population.

Though the developer says the choice of Abuja for the development of this mall was because of the ‘cheaper’ cost of acquiring land in Abuja relative to other locations plus the ease of doing business in the city, Abuja also presents investment and economic indices which investors find compelling.

With a rapidly growing population of 2.2 million, Abuja—Nigeria’s federal capital city–has become  a very strong market comprising A and B level consumers which underpin the residents’ potential buying power.  The city is said to have the highest per capita income in  Nigeria and, according to a recent study on the city’s consumer spend, there are over 68,000 households in the city with annual expenditure of over $150,000 per household.

Lilian Agbakoba, Berverly & Sam Properties’ MD/CEO, explained to journalists at a press briefing in Lagos that Purplestone, in its residential and commercial developments, targets people at the lower level of the society, thus the Purplestone Mall would be more affordable than its peers in order to reach this class of people.

The  Mall which will be opened in November this year, sits on 300 square metres of land, offering 400 shop spaces and opportunities for banking halls, hair-dressing salon etc, and according to the CEO, these shop spaces go for prices 30 percent lower than those of known brands in town.

Apart from its state-of-the-art architecture, Purplestone Mall which is over 95 percent completed, parades amenities and services that make shopping a comfortable and convenient experience. These include parking spaces for 80 cars; standby 250KVA & 60KVA generator set, 24-hour security services, water supply, cleaning of common areas, waste management, conveniences among others.

To rent a shop space in this Mall, the CEO said, a prospective tenant for the ground floor pays N25,000 per square metre; one that wants a space on the first floor pays 23,000 per square metre; rent on the second floor is N21,000 per square metre while service charge on all floors is N15,000 per square metre.

She disclosed that Purplestone as a brand has been on the vanguard for bridging the housing deficit in Nigeria estimated at 17 million housing units, pointing out however, that efforts at this commitment are constrained by factors largely beyond the control of developers like her.

The legal adviser to the company, Olisa Agbakoba, agreed, stressing that the housing sector in Nigeria was in dire need of a legal framework to make it economically viable and secure for property owners.

According to him, there was need for a development law to break down development constraints which he listed as poor security, extremely weak commercial judicial systems, a generally weak legal system, impunity, corruption and an unviable regulatory framework.

“These may be described as economic constraints.  No economic policy will remove these constraints, but a development law can help remove constraints of no mortgage systems in Nigeria, by the repeal of the Land Use Act and erection of a new law on property”, he said, urging urgent action else the housing deficit which is growing at 10 percent per annum would hit 30 million units in the next 10 years.

The CEO  hinted that they had plans to replicate the Purplestone Mall in Asaba, Abeokuta, Lafia, Ikorodu etc, adding that they had done some residential estates for young professionals who could afford N500,000 rent for self-contained apartments and also for those who could afford  N2.5 million rent for two-bedroom apartments.

Chuka Uroko