Real estate investors in East Africa are expressing positivity regarding the various opportunities within the region, which have garnered increased interest in the sector.

This revelation emerged during the inauguration of the 10th Annual East Africa Property Investment Summit, taking place today in Nairobi.

Abdi Mohammed, the Managing Director of Absa Bank Kenya, highlighted that as East Africa continues to undergo rapid urbanization, the demand for affordable housing will continue to rise.

“Furthermore, there is a growing recognition of the significance of sustainable development, with developers increasingly integrating green technologies and sustainable building practices into their projects to meet the escalating demand for environmentally friendly properties. Investors and developers who remain informed about these trends and adapt their strategies accordingly are more likely to prosper in this dynamic and rapidly evolving market,” emphasized Mr. Abdi.

Lucrative Prospects

Moreover, the resilience and performance of the Light Industrial and Warehousing sector in the region present a fresh frontier for investors to acquire new assets and enhance short-term returns. “Although still in its early stages, A-grade industrial real estate in the region has displayed exceptional performance potential, enabling it to withstand any anticipated downturns,” asserted Donald Borthwick of London-listed Grit Real Estate Income Group.

The maturation of sub-segments within the region also supports strategic investment allocations. These sub-segments, namely retail, student housing, and industrial, demonstrate a higher level of maturity compared to other regions on the continent, except South Africa. Tilda Mwai, a Research Associate at Estate Intel, noted, “Nairobi’s status as the hub of East Africa has further bolstered occupier demand. Kenya has witnessed a 9% quarterly increase in the number of registered businesses in Q1 2023, totaling 37,176 registrations. Key players in the financial services and tech sectors continue to drive demand in the commercial sector, reflecting cautious optimism in the traditional real estate sectors.”

Property analysts maintain a cautiously optimistic outlook for middle-income residential properties, student housing, corporate accommodations, data centers, as well as the performing retail and office sectors.