Gauteng Business News

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PROPERTY: Another 17 SMMEs Adopted By Growthpoint


Recent Gauteng Business News

Property Point, a ground breaking SMME development and upliftment initiative by South Africa’s largest JSE-listed property company Growthpoint Properties, continues to etch up significant achievements. The second phase of the programme has been launched and will result in a further 17 black-owned SMME companies being ’incubated’ by this industry leader.

Growthpoint’s Property Point programme sponsors selected micro and small businesses, providing skills training as well as business and personal development instruction. It then supports these SMME’s through opportunities within Growthpoint and its network service providers.

To date, reports Growthpoint Properties’ Shawn Theunissen who is responsible for overseeing the programme, a total of 900 SMMEs have been trained at 60 workshops through Property Point, with topics ranging from industry and business compliance to business systems and personal development training.

Furthermore, the programme has initiated 70 business opportunities for SMMEs with Growthpoint, to the value of over R15 million and with an estimated 175 jobs created. This excludes other business opportunities which have been generated as a result of the programme’s interventions and training.

The 17 black-owned and operated businesses identified for Property Point’s next phase, include small, start-up and medium sized businesses across the property services sector, such as cleaning, pest control, security, building, landscaping, ceilings, plumbing, electrical, air conditioning and refurbishments.

“Through Property Point, we are boosting SMMEs operating in the South African listed property sector. This improves their competitiveness and sustainability, giving them a solid foundation in the marketplace. In turn, the sector will benefit from additional expertise, skills and service,” explains Norbert Sasse, CEO Growthpoint Properties Limited.

Property Point enterprise development programme is part of Growthpoint’s Corporate Social Investment which also outlines targets for preferential procurement from black suppliers, the implementation of environmentally-conscious green building principles, and sustainable business practices.

JSE ALSI 40 listed Growthpoint Properties Limited has a market capitalisation of over R23 billion. Growthpoint has a quality portfolio of 435 properties in South Africa valued at R29,7 billion, and a further 24 properties in Australia through its investment in Growthpoint Properties Australia (GOZ), valued at R4,9 billion.

Growthpoint Properties was recently included in the JSE Socially Responsible Index -- a first for a South African listed property company -- based on its positive environmental, social and economic sustainability practices and corporate governance. Growthpoint remains the top black economic empowered (BEE) property company in South Africa and has been ranked first, for four consecutive years, according to Financial Mail’s Top Empowerment Companies Survey.

In addition to Growthpoint’s pool of property managers and procurements specialists who are available to provide advice for tenders and proposals, giving SMMEs another opportunity to overcome barriers and achieve sustainability, the Property Point programme also benefits from an excellent entrepreneurial network, by way of the association with The Business Place, which is a well established business-learning central hub with branches across South Africa.

“A proven programme highlight is the opportunity for some candidates to attend leading industry events, including the annual Green Building Council of South Africa’s conference as well as those of the South African Property Owners Association and the South African Council of Shopping Centres,” notes Theunissen.

Since inception, the Property Point programme has made significant progress in achieving its goals. Property Point candidates which have recently graduated include cleaning companies Njilingweni Cleaning and TMT Cleaning, security company Easy Security, waste management company Apple Green Holdings and refurbishment company GDB Designs.

“We are incredibly proud of our graduates. These businesses have taken the best advantage of exposure to training and skills development which will no doubt set them apart, and open many doors in the future. They will also become instrumental in spreading their valuable knowledge as they employ more people and contribute more significantly to the industry,” says Theunissen.

The programme’s success has also led to a growing demand for its offering, and already the Property Point is currently in its pilot phase in Cape Town, with plans for an official launch in July 2010 and its further roll-out in other areas of the country in future years.

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