Centum Investment the Company behind the two rivers mall will not undertake the development of any commercial property in the next 5 years as a result of the falling allure of Mall businesses.
The company only intends to focus on managing the Two Rivers, the biggest in Eastern Africa and two office blocks.
The situation is for mall owners and can only get worse in the wake of the COVID 19 pandemic that has resulted in customers shunning crowded places like malls for fear of contracting the disease.
Albeit the increase of malls in Nairobi has led to tenants to push for lower rents following decline in the number of visitor to the malls.
Many investors were lured into setting up malls by the prospect of a growing middle class.As a result of the 10 biggest malls in sub-Saharan Africa 3 are in Nairobi which are Two Rivers, Garden City Mall and the Hub are ranked second, Third and fourth largest respectively.
However, the mall frenzy is dying, according to Centum Real Estate Managing Director Samuel Kariuki the group will focus on managing the Two Rivers Mall and its two office towers.
Speaking after the release of the firm’s annual results for the financial year ended March 2020, Kariuki said the group would now pursue a “four pronged” strategy for its real estate portfolio that prioritized a sales led portfolio.
“In our 5-year strategy we are not putting up any commercial space, only managing the Two Rivers,” Kariuki said. After a splendid performance Centum investment must have realized towards the end of 2018 that of its myriad investments, the property may turn out to be its Achilles heel.
The high flying investment firm, majority owned by billionaire Chris Kirubi faces a difficult moment as a result of the changes in the property market.
A year Earlier, Centum warned its investors that its profits for the financial year ending march 2018 to decline by at least 25 percent, sending a chill down the spines of its shareholders as its share price at the NSE dropped BY 2.50