Emerging Crowd today launches a brand new equity investment opportunity in Amara Suites (“Amara”), West Africa’s premier serviced apartment platform.
Emerging Crowd an investment platform, launches a brand new equity opportunity in Amara Suites, West Africa’s premier serviced apartment platform.
Amara, the number 1 luxury apartment platform, in Lagos which currently operates 78 luxury apartments in prime locations throughout Lagos, Nigeria, offers modern, comfortable, well-appointed and cost-effective serviced apartments with five-star amenities (trained cooks, uninterrupted power, housekeeping and laundry, security, grocery provisions, drivers, and premium concierge services) that are ideal for medium to longer-stays.
Amara is raising £1 million in order to scale up the platform and expand its brand presence in Lagos and in other cities throughout Nigeria. Their premium service is competitive with five-star business hotels, and their client base includes business travellers from several Global Fortune 100 companies and other major multinational firms. Amara has also built partnerships with some of the key players in the global serviced apartment industry. Industry giants such as Oakwood, BridgeStreet, SilverDoor, and Synergy, trust Amara with their own clients and referrals.
Co-Founder of Emerging Crowd, Will Tindall, comments, “Amara has a first-mover advantage, an established presence and a very credible management team. It has an extremely impressive list of returning corporate clients and this gives the company a leg up on new entrants to this fast-growing market, who lack the brand recognition and landlord trust that facilitates their highly scalable management-contract model.”
“Having already proven its ability to execute, it is now able to sign apartment management contracts with landlords, allowing it to split the occupancy risk through a revenue-sharing model. This allows the company to leverage its fixed assets and marketing platform more efficiently and provide a lower-risk model that can be implemented quickly throughout other Nigerian markets and across Africa.”
The lion’s share of this raise will be spent on portfolio expansion and the furnishing and fitting out of these properties. The remainder of the raise will be used to boost online market penetration and to reduce high-interest debt.
Amara Suites’ projections show that 2016 will represent a “break-out” phase for the company, as it swings into profitability. This pivot is simply accounted for by the growth in the number of units and all of these new units belonging to the more profitable, asset-light model. Amara’s robust brand and key relationships has also enabled it to experience better terms and higher purchasing power in contracts that are under negotiation.
CEO of Amara, Abi Adisa, explains, “Having completed my MBA at Wharton, I returned to Nigeria to take advantage of the growth potential in the hospitality sector created by Nigeria’s quick rise in economic importance. Hotel prices in the commercial capital Lagos are among the top five in the world according to travel experts Hogg Robinson, and we believe the serviced apartment sector is significantly under-penetrated and represents a very large and attractive opportunity.”
“Based on benchmark proportions from other major cities, 10% of hotel rooms should be serviced apartment units catering to longer-stay travellers. This means that Lagos should have approximately 1,000 serviced apartment units, when in reality, there are currently only around 100 institutional quality serviced apartment units in Lagos, of which we manage and operate 78.”
"The combination of a growing appetite for Africa in the private equity space, the possibility of a trade sale to one of the many international hospitality brands expanding their Africa footprint, and the option of an eventual listing on a stock exchange means that Amara investors will have several compelling exit opportunities."
Investors in this round will receive the same shares as Abi Adisa and the other majority shareholders, with full voting and participation rights, including on exit. Interested investors can view detailed disclosure documents and financial information on the Emerging Crowd platform and can ask questions directly to Amara’s management team. The minimum investment in Amara is £500, and investors pay no fees to the platform.
Emerging Crowd offers a streamlined investor relations service so that investors in any deal can monitor their portfolio on the platform and see how their money is being put to work over the lifetime of their investment. We combine best practices from private equity, capital markets and crowdfunding, including extensive background checks, thorough due diligence and unparalleled disclosure on every deal.
We also require companies to provide quarterly and annual updates, allowing our members to monitor their investments and see the impact they are having in these rapidly growing markets. Emerging Crowd is secure and transparent, and the investment documents are governed by English law.
Emerging Crowd is an appointed representative of Resolution Compliance Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 574048).
Your capital is at risk. Investing in early stage businesses in frontier and emerging markets involves risks, including illiquidity (the inability to sell assets quickly or without substantial loss in value), lack of dividends, loss of your investment and in some cases dilution, and it should be done only as part of a diversified portfolio. This release has been approved as a financial promotion by Resolution Compliance Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Emerging Crowd is a full-service investment platform showcasing direct investment opportunities in unlisted equity and debt securities offered by SMEs in frontier and emerging markets.