Cytonn gets nod to buy Wasini homes
Investment firm Cytonn has received the go-ahead from the competition watchdog to buy Nairobi’s luxury hotel-cum-furnished apartments vendor Wasini Resorts. The firm’s head of private equity (real estate), Shiv Arora, confirmed entering into discussions with luxury apartment owners but declined to divulge details. “For Wasini, we are in discussions with the proprietor, however, transaction details remain undisclosed at this point in time. As developments occur, we shall keep you updated,” he said. In last Friday’s Kenya Gazette, the Competition Authority of Kenya said it had approved the sale, which will see Cytonn acquire 100 per cent shareholding in Wasini Resorts. Mr Arora said the purchase was informed by research that indicated furnished high-end apartments were in high demand with return on investment yield of up to 13 per cent per annum, which is the most attractive across all real estate investment sectors. The Cytonn executive said there was a big opportunity for serviced apartments across Kenya to serve growing demand by short to mid-stay travellers visiting Kenya and the region. He added that lack of a single furnished apartments’ operator especially within Nairobi’s Westlands, Kilimani and Upper Hill has created a huge investment opportunity. Cytonn is undertaking a serviced-apartment development of its own in Westlands to complement similar homes in Ridgeways. More furnished apartments are also under development at the 35-floor Cytonn Towers in Kilimani. The firm, through its real estate arm Cytonn Real Estate, has 10 ongoing residential and commercial projects reportedly valued at Sh82 billion. It is also the 5th largest shareholder in regional lender, NIC Bank.