Real estate investment trust (Reit) Growthpoint Properties has launched the first and only property portfolio in South Africa to be highly rated by the South African Property Owners Association (Sapoa) and the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA).
The Thrive Portfolio combines quality and aesthetics with sustainability for the benefit of clients and prioritises the health and wellbeing of the people working in the buildings, according to Growthpoint Properties MD Estienne de Klerk.
The portfolio, launched in Johannesburg last month, is valued at R16.1-billion and comprises 71 dual-rated office buildings that span more than 850 000 m2 of office space in central locations nationwide.
The property in the portfolio represents almost half of Growthpoint’s total office portfolio.
“It has proven to be a wonderful strategic initiative from Growthpoint’s point of view to extend the Thrive Portfolio throughout our business,” De Klerk said at the launch, held in Johannesburg last month, further noting that the company aimed to have close to 100 buildings certified by the end of the year.
Growthpoint Properties office division director Rudolf Pienaar added that the Thrive Portfolio is divided into categories, with the Platinum Thrive Portfolio buildings boasting a Sapoa Premium- or A-grade rating, as well as a 4-Star, or higher, GBCSA rating, or Energy and Water Performance (EWP) certification.
The Gold Thrive Portfolio buildings are Sapoa B-grade rated or higher, and have GBCSA EWP certification or have received at least 3-Star Existing Building Performance certification.
The measurable benefits can be seen on the multifunctional Growthpoint App, which includes details about all Thrive Portfolio buildings, as well as near real-time information on electricity and water savings.
Most of the Thrive Portfolio buildings provide standby electricity and water. They maximise productivity through the quality and efficiency of Growthpoint’s award-winning designs that create spaces where businesses can thrive. These supportive environments are designed to attract and retain the best talent, foster innovation and increase staff productivity to drive businesses forward, says Growthpoint.
“Sustainability has become paramount and office spaces are being recognised as the ideal locations for implementing sustainable solutions, largely due to the amount of time spent in these buildings. Many clients who occupy our buildings are environmentally conscious, and are constantly looking for the next innovation to help reduce their carbon footprints, while prioritising the health and wellbeing of their [employees],” Pienaar emphasised.
The CEOs of the GBCSA and Sapoa have endorsed the launch of the Thrive Portfolio, and expressed their pride and excitement at being a part of the offering, with GBCSA CEO Dorah Modise noting that this exclusive new portfolio of Platinum- and Gold-rated Thrive buildings includes many of South Africa’s certified green buildings.
“We believe this venture will bring a wealth of benefits to the industry,” she said.
Sapoa CEO Neil Gopal, meanwhile, added that the association believed that, by consolidating all parties’ unique skills, they would bring “something completely unique and exclusive to the property industry”.
As part of its trading and development drive, Growthpoint Properties undertook several developments, which included developments for clients or third parties, Growthpoint development head Pieter Engelbrecht highlighted at the launch.
South Africa’s largest listed Reit has started the development of diversified miner Exxaro Resources’ multimillion-rand corporate headquarters in Centurion, which will comprise 18 500 m2 of office space. The development is designed for 4-Star Green Star SA certification from the GBCSA.
Having started earthworks, Growthpoint was on track to hand over the site in April 2019, Engelbrecht said.
Growthpoint has also moved onto site at its 144 Oxford development in Rosebank, Johannesburg, while the 112 000 m2 office development for Discovery, in Sandton, is nearing completion.
Engelbrecht noted that Discovery was expected to move into the first phase of development next month. The development received 5-Star Green Star design- rated certification from the GBCSA.
Growthpoint will also hand over an office development in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, to a financial services provider this month.