Four years after the termination of a franchise agreement between international real estate firm, Pam Golding Properties and businesswoman Daphne Swanepoel under a cloud of controversy, the franchise is again back in the country.
Pam Golding Namibia, now under the leadership of the former Deputy Minister of Environment and Tourism, Leon Jooste, was officially launched on Tuesday by the Minister of Trade and Industry, Calle Schlettwein. The launch also coincided with the opening of Pam Golding's office in Swakopmund.
Jooste, who is co-owner of Pam Golding Properties (PGP) Namibia together with partner, Paul Kruger, was positive about the prospects of the franchise despite scandals associated with it in the past.
He told the Economist: "When I committed to make the sales marketing component part of the portfolio of the Creatif Group which serves the property industry, I had only one aspiration and that was to secure the best possible franchise in the industry and that is without any doubt Pam Golding Properties.
"The so called scandals took place four years ago already and the franchisor (Pam Golding Properties) made a calculated decision to withdraw before things got out of hand. I am obviously not at liberty to discuss the merits of these incidents which allegedly took place, but as far as I know, the former franchisee was not found guilty on any of these incidents and she today has a valid Fidelity Fund Certificate from the Namibia Estate Agents Board trading under a new name.
He said he had no reason to believe that the history of the franchise will be detrimental to his business, adding that they have not encountered resistance from the market.
Jooste said since opening the first office under the Pam Golding brand in Windhoek in September 2012 business has exceeded all expectations and the prospects remain good. The company intends to open a third office in the country in Walvis Bay, and plans are already at an advanced stage.
Jooste added: "Our business is based on the cornerstones of empathy, knowledge, experience and most of all, integrity. I am convinced that the integrity of the current owners and the team of employees will be adequate to convince the local market that they are not taking any risk by choosing our brand. The profile of the Pam Golding Properties brand is of such stature that there is more than enough inherent, institutional resilience to counter something like this."
Pam Golding Properties Namibia is part of the Creatif Group which also includes Creatif Property Developers responsible for property development management and Creatif Marketing which is a specialist marketing company focussed on the branding of property developments. Together these companies provide a complete solution to clients for property development from the conceptualisation stage all the way to the actual sales (or rental) marketing which takes place towards the end of a development.