Kenyan retailers snap up new buildings as demand for retail space grows
The-Star.co.ke - Dec 20th 2013, 11:51
Commercial property development in Kitale town is on a roll, with those splurging huge sums reaping big, thanks to growing demand for retail space. - See more at: http://www.the-star.co.ke/news/article-145255/retailers-snap-new-buildings-kitale-town#sthash.8AX5Q0mt.dpuf
Retailers snap up new buildings in Kitale town
Newly built properties and those under construction have been snapped up by retail businesses including supermarket chains with a countrywide foothold, and commercial banks.
The newest in the town, Trafalgar Square, a five-storey building, has been let to Tuskys which opened a megastore in November.
he single tenant outpaced potential competitors, with newly NSE-listed I&M Bank having been tipped to have sought space at the Sh400 million building.
Paresh Tanna, the building’s owner, said he is looking to accommodate firms left out of Trafalgar in his other buildings in the town, in which Equity, EcoBank and Barclays are housed.
“Several businesses are looking for space, including I&M Bank that had booked (at Trafalgar), but they will be accommodated in my other buildings,” he said.
Another building under construction, the Mega Centre being put up by Grandways Ventures, is set for completion in December. Firms – including Nakumatt Holdings, Imperial Bank, Standard & Chartered and Kenyatta University – are said to have already pre-booked space at the building put up at an estimated Sh1 billion.
It has 70 shop spaces, and a bookshop is said to be among those seeking to rent. Hatibu Gona Senzighe, a consultant for the project, said the Trans Nzoia county government to erect street lighting in the town to boost security.
“Since most of the tenants on this building will be operating for 24 hours, there is need for security lights to be erected as one way of making trade aids available,” he said.
The county government said it has allocated Sh10 million for the town’s street lighting project set to start soon. Demand for retail space is rising on the back of a growing consumer catchment of resident population and rising student numbers as universities and colleges open campuses in the town.
Mt Kenya University, which had been renting space in the town, recently completed construction of a building on Kitale’s outskirts and moved in.
Several public and private universities have set up centres in the town in rush that has whetted demand for commercial space, as they take up copious amounts of the available buildings.
The largest retailer in Kitale has been Khetia’s Supermarket, which now has to face off with the country’s biggest chains prying on its territory.
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