Vukile opens R114m extension, upgrade of Dobsonville Mall

Itumeleng Mothibeli (Supplied)
Itumeleng Mothibeli (Supplied)

Cape Town - The Dobsonville Mall in Soweto celebrated the grand opening of its new R114m extension last Friday.

Owned by JSE-listed REIT Vukile Property Fund, the Dobsonville Mall attracts over a million shoppers each month.

The mall has been modernised and increased from 23 000m² to 27 000m² and its name has been changed from Dobsonville Shopping Centre to Dobsonville Mall.

Executive asset manager at Vukile, Itumeleng Mothibeli, says this major investment in Dobsonville Mall is backed by Vukile’s data-driven asset management.

"The centre originally opened in 1994 and our strategic upgrade and extension will ensure it is optimised for the next generation of shoppers. We have increased the retail diversity at the centre and improved its tenant mix," says Mothibeli.

"The innovative project converted office space beside the centre into better performing retail space, which links with the original centre. It has added an entire new dimension to the shopping experience, including a new mall and food court.”

A total of 118 people are employed by the tenants that are trading as part of its extension, of which 94% of this total are residents from Dobsonville and surrounding areas.

Before its upgrade, Dobsonville Shopping Centre was home to more than 50 stores including its anchor store, Shoprite.

The mall now boasts more than 80 stores. Its new extension features Pick n Pay and Pick n Pay Liquor, PQ Clothing, Foschini, Clicks, Pep Home and Legit.

New and improved tenants in the existing shopping centre include Mr Price, Truworths, Identity, Exact and Beaver Canoe.

A key element of Vukile’s up-leasing strategy for the mall included aggressively decreasing its exposure to the underperforming furniture retail category, thus improving its overall shopper appeal and rental growth potential.

For Vukile, the Dobsonville Mall redevelopment has a projected net yield of 9.5% on its capital investment. However, it said the long-term value of this investment is in securing the centre’s dominant position in the future, and its sustainable retail performance, relevance and popularity.

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