South Africa’s Vantage Capital invests $20m in Nigerian real estate firm

At a time when Nigeria’s policy on foreign currency controls are believed to be discouraging investments, Vantage Capital, Africa’s largest mezzanine fund manager, Thursday, announced that it has provided $20 million funding to Landmark Africa, one of Nigeria’s leading property developers.

Landmark has developed or managed over 130,000 square meter of prime real estate across the continent. Headquartered in Lagos, with offices in several countries including South Africa and the United Kingdom, Landmark has over its nineteen-year history, built a high-quality property portfolio, including A-Grade offices for over 100 corporate clients.

The real estate firm is currently building Landmark Village, which it said would be an iconic “Live, Work, Play” mixed-use development with breath-taking sea views in the exclusive area of Victoria Island.

“I’m very impressed with Landmark’s long track-record of operating so successfully in a challenging environment like Nigeria. This type of transaction perfectly illustrates our firm’s investment strategy of supporting strong management teams of Pan-African businesses,” said Johnny Jones, Associate Partner at Vantage Capital.

Landmark has already completed a cutting-edge, 2,500 person events centre, a Japanese Shiro restaurant and Hard Rock Café at the village, and plans to enhance the development with a state of the art training centre and two extraordinary multi-tiered office buildings with over 20,000 square meter of dynamic office space. The premises will also encompass a 4-star luxury hotel, fully serviced extended stay apartments and upscale residences for sale, each offering a unique residential experience.

Warren van der Merwe, Chief Operating Officer of Vantage Capital, said, his company looks forward to partnering with Landmark “as they develop a world class mixed-use precinct in Victoria Island. We were impressed by the quality of the office buildings, and restaurants they have completed to date in Nigeria.”

The Landmark investment is Vantage Capital’s second transaction in Fund III, which is targeting a final closing of $260 million, and has a 60 percent allocation to countries outside South Africa. A Namibian and a South African transaction are expected to close during the first half of 2016 for a further aggregate investment of over $22 million.

Paul Onwuanibe, CEO of Landmark expressed the real estate firm’s excitement at the new investment, which he says would help the company on its journey to achieving the $5 billion valuation mark over the next decade.

“We are convinced the advent of Vantage will portend a marked acceleration towards achieving our goals and rewriting the African story,” Onwuanibe said.

Werksmans and Adepetun Caxton-Martins Agbor & Segun were the main legal advisors for the deal while Investment One Financial Services acted as Lead Corporate Advisor.