WATERFALL GAUTENG (SOUTH AFRICA) – Today Attacq celebrated the first birthday of the Mall of Africa with a Safari of the Senses tour through the mall hosted exclusively for senior members of the media
Members of the media were treated to a sensory journey through the Mall of Africa where they could experience all that is on offer in the Mall and interact with some of the leading brands represented in the Mall of Africa including Woolworths, Starbucks, Jo Malone, Sorbet Man and Lucky Bread to name a few.
In his welcome address Morné Wilken, CEO of Attacq explained that Attacq regards the Mall of Africa as one of its most valuable assets in the Attacq property portfolio. “This mall is the realisation of a very significant vision and a long-term business journey. We identified a gap in the market to develop something extraordinary in the Waterfall area in the centre of Gauteng, the financial hub of South Africa,” says Wilken.
The idea behind the Mall of Africa was to create something unique. “Given the great location, we wanted to create the benchmark Mall for Africa and therefore we aptly named it Mall of Africa’” notes Wilken. “The Mall of Africa is conveniently located in Waterfall on the N1 at the Allandale off-ramp, we created a unique Gauteng destination experience for local shoppers, visitors and tourists alike,” he says.
“Mall of Africa is proving to be an iconic super regional shopping mall and the destination it was intended to be, serving a large and growing customer base as part of Waterfall City, the CBD of Gauteng’s newest city in the making,” states Wilken.
The nature and design of the mall meets the identified customer needs. Mall of Africa caters for significant footfall, making it attractive to top international brands, national and other quality tenants. Its stature secures the future of the mall and ensures it will dominate in the region. The 133 000 m2 first phase is a significant draw card for both leading retail brands and shoppers, at its more than 300 retailers and restaurants.
“Attacq is very proud of the first year of trading since opening day, 28 April last year, when more than 123 000 people visited the mall. In the eleven months to the end of March this year, over 13 700 000 people had visited the mall at an average monthly visitors’ rate of over 1 200 000 visitors per month. Our best performing months were May 2016 with 1 537 661 visitors and in December when 1 517 899 visited the Mall of Africa,” explains Wilken.
Despite tough economic times Mall of Africa is trading above expectations. Attacq proudly states that the Mall of Africa achieved a turnover of R3 427 184 526 for the eleven months of trading to March 2017, at an average of R311 562 229 per month with a highlight month of R491 145 650 turnover achieved in December.
Michael Clampett, Head of Retail of Attacq, adds: “We worked hard to achieve the great retail performance to date, despite the volatile economic climate, in a downgraded South African economy.” The Mall of Africa has achieved excellent trading densities in the first eleven months of trading to end of March 2017 and has seen an average of R2 630 per square meter. The best performing month so far was December 2016, when it went up to R4 110 per square meter. “We have also recorded an average spend per head per visit of R249.00 over the 11 months to March 2017,” he says.
Clampett explains that Waterfall, the newest city in Gauteng, is rapidly becoming the new focal point in the province where business, retail and entertainment come together. “However, we need to operate responsibly as custodians of a brighter and sustainable future,” adds Clampett.
“Waterfall is a leader when it comes to sustainability in Gauteng. Attacq is testing business cases for sustainable technologies across waste, water, carbon, and energy. The energy and water ratings of our buildings in Waterfall is an ongoing process, as these are not only good practice in transparency, but also highlights where we can improve most efficiently, and the Mall of Africa is no exception” he adds.
As part of the sustainable environmental approach, a solar rooftop photovoltaic plant, with 15 080 solar panels, has been installed on the roof of the super-regional Mall of Africa in Waterfall City. The 4 755 kWp PV plant, covering an area of 30 000 m2, will direct electricity into the six substations in the Mall of Africa, generating more than 16% of the mall’s power requirement. More than 360km of DC cables were used to connect the solar panels on the roof to the inverters in the building.
The clean renewable energy generated at the plant will reduce the carbon footprint of the Waterfall City by 8 180 tonnes of CO2e in the first year of operation. When completed this will be the largest rooftop diesel/PV hybrid system in the world. The use of the plant will save 4 394,36 tons of coal per year and reduce the coal trucks on the road by 157 per year.
Wilken also states that Waterfall and the Mall of Africa are rapidly becoming synonymous with the home of leading brands. “There are several brands that have made their South African debut in Mall of Africa. These include The Kooples and Zara Home amongst others,” he says. There are also several new concept and flagship stores in the mall; such as Woolworths, iStore, Cotton On and Mr Price Weekend. The most recent stores that have opened are Huawei and Swatch while Tasha’s will open in July 2017.
“These top brands recognise that Waterfall is a premium destination, with the right demographic of shopper and is an exciting area to invest in. Waterfall City where the mall is located is attractive both in terms of location and the demographics of the surrounding area,” says Wilken. Waterfall City is the new corporate headquarters consolidation destination for businesses such as PwC and the newly secured Deloitte deal. Attacq views the mall as the tipping point for putting Waterfall City on the map.
The design of Waterfall City is to create an environment where people can work, live and play and continues to be one of the most attractive development pipelines in South Africa, given that it is an infill development without legacy issues, while having significant scale and in an excellent location.
Wilken concludes: “We are committed to the future of Gauteng as the economic hub of the continent and to adding value to the future of South Africa – we will be part of the solution for economic prosperity in the region”.