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Prime Time revenue up 19 %

Botswana Stock Exchange listed Property Group Primetime closed in on the first six months of their 2019 financial year with significant increase in their key revenue driving measures.

According to the Group’s unaudited financial results for the half year period ended February 2019 the business realized growth in contractual lease revenue registering over P71.7 million for the period under review compared to just over P60 million recorded in the six months’ period ended February 2018. In rental income space the Group gathered over P75.2 million compared to over P64.6 million posted for the 2018 half year ended.

According to the financial results commentary published on Wednesday the 19 % growth in rental income is attributable to inclusion of revenues contributed by new developments completed in the prior financial year. he three priorities being Chirundu Mall in Chirundu, Zambia which opened at the end of April 2018.Munali Mall in Lusaka and the Design Quarter at Setlhoa in Gaborone which were both completed right at the end of the last financial year in August 2018, with space steadily being taken up in this reporting period.  

On another positive note, during this half year period the PrimeTime registered significant shrink in vacancy rate signaling positive tenancy response from the property market across the rest of the company portfolio. According to the financial report, the vacancy rate has been diminishing since the last year end. Observing key changes in some portfolios, at Pilane Crossing, one of Prime Time new properties Exact and Options clothing retail outlets have signed leases, with Exact opening for trade just before Christmas.

The final tenant at PwC Office Park Lusaka took occupation at the end of 2018 following the extensive refurbishment made to the property. The financial report further revealed that Major tenants renewing their leases with PrimeTime includes Letshego Holdings Limited which is occupying PrimeTime properties at Letshego Place, the South African High Commission plus PEP and Ackermans at Nswazwi Mall, Francistown.

According to management, the combined effect of the above has been to normalize the Group’s vacancy rate back down to 3% from just over 5% where it stood at the last year end. “Our anticipation is that the vacancy should reduce further as Munali, Chirundu and Design Quarter complete their respective letting” highlight Primetime executives in the report.

Sharing on this current financial year’s projects, the company management says major refurbishments and maintenance plans predominantly the completion of the Pilane Crossing extension which is well underway and 50% let. Furthermore, Primetime says the road widening project in Setlhoa is complete improving the accessibility of both Sebele Centre and the Design Quarter.

“The ground lease extension agreements at both Boiteko Junction in Serowe and our retail centre in Ghanzi are scheduled to complete in the next few months,” highlighted A L Kelly Primetime Managing Director. On the future outlook the Kelly noted that under its investment property pipeline is a commercial development at Setlhoa, Pinnacle Park. The company says the estimated build cost for Phase I stands at over P30m excluding land which is already acquired noting that funds have already been secured and the construction is underway with completion scheduled for March 2020.

“Elsewhere we continue to assess other opportunities outside of our existing geographical bases and expect to make investments in the very near future,” added PrimeTime Boss. PrimeTime Properties is a variable loan stock company listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange. It is regarded as one of the major property investment vehicle for institutions and private investors in Botswana, with the number of shareholders growing from 1337 on listing in Dec 2007 to close to 2,000 today.

It is invested in a diversified portfolio of office, retail and industrial properties throughout Botswana and more recently in Zambia. The portfolio was valued at BWP 764 million at our 2015 financial year end, a figure we anticipate to rise substantially in the 2016 year end valuations as major acquisitions will be reflected in the 2016 figures.

The performance is reflected in the solid share price and consistent increase in valuation and distribution year on year.

Looking forward, MD Kelly shared that the company is pursuing a policy of risk diversification by seeking investments elsewhere beyond Botswana’s borders. To this end it acquired two properties in Zambia on a sale & leaseback basis from G4S Zambia and continues to look for opportunities outside the country.

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Food prices continue to rise, but at a slower rate

28th November 2022

Prices for cereals or staple foods in Botswana and other Southern African countries continue to rise at a slower pace, following trends in the global markets, according to the latest November 2022 Food Price Monitoring and Analysis by Food Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.

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Still doing business the old way?

18th November 2022

It’s time to get business done better with MTN Business Botswana’s ICT Solutions.

Running a digital businessMTN Business Solutions Botswana, popularly known as MTN Business is an Internet Service Provider. We are a subsidiary of MTN Group Limited, a multinational telecommunications Group headquartered in South Africa, which operates in 19 markets across Africa and the Middle East.

More and more, clients are looking for ways to keep their staff productive in a dynamically changing business environment. Whether your people are working from home, the office or abroad, there is a growing recognition that digitising your operations can offer unprecedented commercial value in flexibility, productivity and growth. This new, digital reality means that it is more important than ever to stay agile – if there is anything that can slow a business down, it is being burdened by othatld technology.

Having made substantial investments in fibre technology, high-speed terrestrial and undersea networks and new frequency spectrum across the markets wherein it operates, MTN is perfectly positioned to respond to this shift in the market.

A few years ago, MTN also made the decision to build an IP capable radio network for its mobile services, giving its core network the ability to seamlessly integrate with enterprise IP networks. The mobile towers deliver services to enterprise clients absolutely anywhere it has a network, shortening the last mile and removing complexity and cost.

Now there is increasing demand from clients to connect their remote sites in all areas, including rural and semi- rural. MTN has assisted clients with overcoming this connectivity hurdle, enabling their staff to get the job done wherever they are.
MTN’s evolution

For MTN, the focus has shifted from just being a core telecommunications services provider, towards also becoming a technology solutions provider. The service offering now also includes Unified Communications, Data Hosting and Cloud Solutions, Security-As-A-Service and Managed Network Services. The scope has changed to being client and industry specific, so the requirements and service portfolio vary from one client to the next. The expectation is that a company like MTN must respond to these challenges, helping clients to get business done better as they shift from old to new technologies.

As many businesses continue to grapple with a digitally dynamic world, they face new challenges that have to be solved. This environment will benefit those that are more digitally enabled and agile. It is a brave new world that will favour online over on-site, wireless over wired and fluid over formulaic. Businesses will seek out partners and suppliers that are every bit as flexible and forward-looking as they are.
Ultimately, clients need partners like MTN Business that will invest in infrastructure, deliver the services they require, have market credibility, are financially sound and have a long-term commitment to their market presence.

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BIE to vitalize the Dignity of Engineers

9th November 2022

Botswana Institution Of Engineers (BIE), has last week hosted a gala dinner in  which they appreciated engineers who worked tirelessly and with dedication for 10 years from 1983 to steer the BIE to its current status.

The event that was held at the Phakalane Golf Estate had brought together young, experienced and veteran engineers and was held under the theme “Vitalize the dignity and eminence of all professional engineers”.

Explaining the theme, the institution’s treasurer, Thanabalasingam Raveendran said that engineers were looked upon reverentially with respect as the educated but with time it seems to have deteriorated. He indicated that there is a need to change the narrative by all means.

“The BIE exists for the welfare and the betterment of us Botswana engineers, we need to recognize specialised units within our Institution. We Engineers strongly believe in Engineers make it happen” Raveendran said.

He indicated that under the theme they appeal to all engineers to energize, to attain quality of being worthy of honour and respect and to achieve recognized superiority amongst the Society.

Raveendran stated that engineers need to ensure their end product is of good quality satisfying the end users expectations and engineers must be honest in their work.

“Approximately 8000 engineers registered with Engineering Regulatory Board (ERB) are not members of the BIE, engineers need to make every effort to recruit them to BIE” he said.

He alluded that BIE being a society, it currently needs to upgrade itself at par with professional institutions elsewhere like the UK and USA.

He further stated that BIE has to have engineering units of specialised disciplines like Civil/Mechanical/electrical etc

“As President Masisi indicated in his inaugural speech, the young people, who make 60 percent of the population of this country, are the future leaders and therefore investing in them is building the bridge to the future” said Raveendran

Kandima indicated that BIE has a memorandum of Understanding with Engineers Registration Board (ERB), where BIE is a recognised provider of CPD training, mentorship programmes and more importantly IPD undertaking to upgrade the skills and know-how of our engineers.

“For us to achieve our mandate and make worthwhile changes to engineering in Botswana, we have to be totally focused and act with intent” said Kandima.

Furthermore, Stephen Williams, past president of the BIE from 1986-1988 told the engineers that  the BIE provides a fertile environment where they can meet, share ideas and grow professionally.

“The BIE is also a nesting place for graduate engineers to learn from their peers and seniors, it also cater for engineering technicians and technologists and so nobody in the technology field is left out” he said.

He further indicated that Botswana Government provides a conductive environment for growth of engineering professionals.

“It must be stated that the Botswana Government recognises the existence of BIE and it can further be stated that the government enables ERB to carry out its mandate as a regulator of engineering professionals” said Williams

He plead with engineering companies to recognize and support BIE as it is the only source of engineering personnel’s for various Industries .

Furthermore, when giving his farewell speech, Michael Pinard , a past president of the institution  said how they are viewed as engineers by the general public might be due to some lack of appreciation as to exactly what role they play in the development of the country.

“The BIE slogan is aptly coined-Engineers make it happen, in other words, what man dreams engineers create” Said Pinard.

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