Ascension shells out for landmark property

Atterbury House, Cape Town CBD. Atterbury House, Cape Town CBD.

CAPE TOWN-based property group Ascension, which was borne out of Cape Empowerment Trust, has snapped up the landmark Shell House on the Foreshore. A deal with giant property group Atterbury will see Ascension pay R341m for the building, which is now known as ‘Atterbury House.’

Ascension said the Atterbury acquisition was consistent with Ascension’s growth strategy. The building meets the company’s stated investment criteria in terms of its central location, its tenant lease and net income profile. Ascension said the building was a landmark property in Cape Town and was a strategic addition to Ascension’s portfolio of Cape Town CBD assets.

Ascension, founded in 2006, is a black managed and substantially black owned Real Estate Investment Trust which focuses on centrally located larger commercial office buildings in SA with a strong focus towards government and other empowerment sensitive tenants.

Atterbury House comprises 26,236m2 of office space and 570 undercover parking bays. The weighted average net rental per square metre of the property is currently R97.m2. On the proposed purchase price Atterbury House will yield a rather nifty 8,7% for Ascension, which reported full year results to end June 
last month.

The company, in its first year on the JSE, grew its property portfolio to R1,95bn. This figure inflates to R2,65bn if unconditional acquisitions are included.

Shaun Rai, one of the founding shareholders and executive director of Ascension, said the key driver for the company’s continued success was focusing on its acquisition strategy of acquiring larger, centrally located commercial office buildings in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria and Nelspruit with market or under-market related rentals at yield accretive prices.

“Our portfolio is 68% tenanted by government in line with our strategic focus on this market.”


By Jenni McCann

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