Mini Bakeries, the baker of Supa Loaf bread, is jumping into real estate with plans to construct a Sh3.5 billion residential estate in Kiambu County.
The family-owned company, which was founded in 1983, plans to build a gated community off Kamiti Road, on what was formerly a coffee plantation, as it seeks to reduce dependency on revenue from bread.
The project whose groundbreaking ceremony is slated for next month comprises 178 three-bedroom semi-detached houses and 171 four-bedroom detached houses. The maisonettes will be for sale.
“There has been a rapid increase in the number of people moving to the urban areas … which has led to an increase in demand for housing. It is against this backdrop that the project proponent has decided to establish the mega project,” Mini Bakeries said in its filings to Nema.
The high-end estate, whose environment impact assessment was approved by Nema last year, features a retail centre and a sewer treatment plant that will serve the anticipated 2,000 residents.
Mini Bakeries joins a growing list of companies that are making a foray into real estate in a bid to create new revenue streams, diversify income and increase profitability.
The Kenyan construction industry grew by 5.5 per cent last year up from 4.8 per cent in 2012, indicating investors’ enhanced interest in real estate amid growing demand for housing.
Statistics show that the housing supply in the country is about 30,000 units a year against an annual demand of more than 150,000 units – leaving a deficit of 120,000 housing units.
According to the Economic Survey 2014, investments in the building and construction sector are likely to remain robust against a background of stable interest rates coupled with the private sector’s resilient participation, especially in the real estate development.