When it comes to tough slogs in entrepreneurship, look no further than the residential construction market booming in Ongwediva, Oshakati and Eenhana. Any construction company that started before the real estate bust of the North in 2003 and still exists today has stories to tell.
Greywall Properties is the name behind some of the successful property developments in Northern Namibia.
The company has been credited for the commercial and residential developments on the following properties;
Rockwell Complex : Marula street, Ongwediva, N$ 5.7 million;
Greenwell Complex : Main road - Eenhana, N$22.0 million;
8 houses : extension 3 - Ondagwa, N$ 2.6 million;
10 houses : extension 11 - Ongwediva, N$ 5.8 million;
3 House : Oshakati West - Oshakati, N$ 1.6 million;
For a company established only five years ago with a vision of building a turnkey operation that offers the ambit of residential and commercial buildings, Greywall Properties has demonstrated how a small business can deliver high quality construction services at a cost effective price to not only meet the needs of development but exceed them.
The company now employs more than 100 people from a one man show where the founder Erastus Nikodemus developed a concept that would soon be followed by many.
Greywall Properties’ current project is the 220 houses of Atusheni Village in Eenhana.
This medium density suburb already has 70% occupancy rate from buyers keen on settling in the town. Nikodemus’ wife, Menethe runs an estate agency currently selling out the remaining houses of this new residential area in Eenhana.
The company has subdivisions in construction, project management, electrical, cabinetry, plumbing and estate agency. During the construction of Rockwell complex the company employed over 80 people over a period of 8 months. This lucrative complex was constructed at the cost of N$ 5.8 million.
Successful property companies should have a wide variety of skills and experience to help them to lead a team and oversee various projects. For starters, a good educational background can prepare them for the construction industry. Common types of degrees that are pursued include architecture, building sciences, construction management and engineering. This provides the foundation for a future career path in the construction industry and provides a good understanding of the theoretical ideas of construction practices. And that is what Greywall boasts with.
Nikodemus has full knowledge of the property industry having been operating an architectural business for more than fifteen (15) years in the North Central Regions of Namibia and possess a Masters Degree in Architecture at San Francisco Institute of Architecture.
There is no substitute for work experience in the field. Greywall combines its management’s educational background with real-world knowledge to oversee its teams and carry out projects.
Erastus Nikodemus’ strategy to excel in the northern economy is based on five principles: “Listen to your customers. React to the opportunities that the market will offer to you. Work harder and smarter than your competitors.
Never sacrifice quality for price. Retain the best people and invest in the right equipment for your business.” He advises other business owners, “Don’t wait for the market to come back. This is the new normal. Be open-minded to the opportunities that the market gives you.”
In 2003 Nikodemus Architectural Design (NAD) was established to complement the experience of architectural design that the managing director possesses. It was from NAD that idea that Greywall Properties was born and both entities have transitioned from a small project remodeling company to a green builder and alternative property provider.
Nikodemus worked for the Department of Works in the Ministry of Works and Transport as an architectural technologist for a period of three years before joining Leon Barnard Architects where he worked as a Senior Architectural Technologist for two years.
It was there where the idea of a property company and an architectural company synergy was born, thanks to his wide experience in project management and contract administration
In addition to the full range of core services offered by Nikodemus Architectural Design, the organisation overseas additional services through strategic alliances in the following areas:
Nikodemus Architectural Design is one of the first black empowerment architectural organisations in northern Namibia.
The organisation, having been established, has had multiple benefits to the local economy of the northern regions in terms of infrastructure development and has created a solid base upon which the previously disadvantaged Namibians participate in the main stream of the local economy.
“The ultimate vision of this organisation is to witness full and dominant participation of the previously neglected communities of the Namibian society into all spheres of the local economy. In fact, it is estimated that 10 young men and women will be employed once the current operations have been expanded through participation in state capital projects,” says the managing director.
Managing projects scattered around northern Namibia from Outapi to Eenhana and working with a full team of diverse individuals is not an easy task, but Greywall’s preparedness to take appropriate action through planning has significantly increased the chances of success on its project.
Given the unacceptably high and increasing level of un employment, wide spread poverty and the urgent need to redress the existing inequalities, the company has and will continue strive to adhere to the sound business principles of a long life and permanent going concern so as to guarantee the eradication of the socio-economic evils through permanent job creation and continued job security.
The contributions that the business has brought and will continue to bring to the local economy in summary are:
Redistribution of wealth to formerly neglected Namibians
Profits remaining in Namibia thereby creating more wealth through savings
Sufficient and sustainable human and natural resource utilisation and management for the direct benefit of individual employees and the Namibian society at large
Indigenous Namibian business people and employees having the opportunity to improve their entrepreneurial and business management skills and knowledge.PF