Hosted by the SA Property Investors Network (Sapin), Darren Francis was named the overall winner of the 2021 Investor of the Year Awards. Francis has rebuilt and renovated a dilapidated piece of land and turned it into a multi-let property, bringing dignity and hope to the Cape Flats.
Darren Francis, Investor for Change and Investor of the Year winner
“The Investor of the Year Awards is about so much more than glitz and glamour. It’s about South African individuals who have overcome tremendous odds and empowered themselves and many others around them through innovative and daring property deals. It was incredible to celebrate the success stories of ordinary people who overcame the insurmountable to change the trajectory of their lives and uplift the areas that they’ve invested in,” said Andrew Walker, CEO of Sapin.
The five award category winners are:
Winner: Beginner Investor - Nomakhosi Makolota
Nomakhosi Makolota, Beginner Investor winner
Nomakhosi Makolota, who grew up in Soweto, Pimville, developed a vacant stand with shacks into units with the help of Tuhf’s Umastandi finance. These units are rented out and are providing Makolota with a positive cashflow. Makolota has only just begun. She plans to buy and develop more residential properties that provide occupants with a sense of dignity.
Winner: Most Growth Investor - Teren Ramnundlall
Teren Ramnundlall, Most Growth Investor winner
Having invested in his first property in 2018, Teren Ramnundlall is a full-time property investor who pitched multi-let deals in various Johannesburg locations. Ramnundlall entered the awards to give back by sharing his story and encouraging others to believe that property investment is possible for them. Ramnundlall says he hopes he can be an inspiration to other people in the same way that his property coaches inspired and supported him. In doing so, he believes he can uplift others.
Winner: Investor for Change - Darren Francis
Within 18 months, Darren Francis flipped six properties with the intention to expand into the buy-to-let market. His strategy has focussed on creating jobs and sustainable living. After changing the lives of my family members, he discovered that property investing was bigger than what he thought it would be. It was an opportunity to change not only his life and his family, but he managed to create jobs. Through Francis’s investments, he could help bridge the gap of people looking for employment and help them provide food for their families. Creating permanent employment has become the focus of his property investments.
“This is a victory for my dad. Although his business failed, his hard work paid off and this is something I can hang on my wall and call it my father’s award. It’s also a win for my community and many young people will see this as an opportunity to do better,” said Francis.
Winner: Innovative Investor - Ridhwaan Basa
Ridhwaan Basa, Innovative Investor winner
Ridhwaan Basa pitched a rent-to-rent Airbnb deal in Camps Bay, Cape Town, which is generating a healthy cash flow for him. After being hospitalised for 29 days with Covid-19 in December 2020, Basa thought it might all be over. He spent eight days in ICU but only came off of 24/7 oxygen support in the middle of March 2021. “I almost died, but thanks to the smart strategies and automations that I put into place, my Airbnb business was able to run without me,” said Basa.
Winner: Big Leagues Investor - Mulalo Tshitema
Mulalo Tshitema, Big Leagues Investor winner
Mulalo Tshitema employed four people to assist him in running a multi-let in Auckland Park that has been in operation since 2018 with 20 fully let rooms. His second deal comprised 94 two-bedroom apartments with 52 units complete and the remainder to be completed by the end of the year. Tshitema said of his award, “I will see it as an award to thank myself on achieving my goal to inspire South Africans and help them see the possibility to start their own business and help solve unemployment in our country.”