Growth of Commercial Sector Infrastructure (I)
Three key facilities are set to improve the commercial landscape in Kwara State.
Significant opportunities exist for private operators to become involved in developing the commercial sector as diverse as aviation (International Aviation College), logistics (Truck Plaza), and retail (shopping mall).
Aviation (International Aviation College)
The International Aviation college, which has since the past year, begun operation in Ilorin, the State Capital, is poised to be a pace setter in the aviation sector in the country.
Kwara State is responsible for the initial financial outlay to establish the International Aviation College (IAC) but intends seeking private investors to take equity in the undertaking once it is up and running.
The college will train pilots of all sorts. International demand for pilots is very high and demand is expected to remain strong. The number of airlines operating in Nigeria has increased exponentially in recent years. The specialist training needed for helicopter piloting (a skill very much in demand in the oil industry in Nigeria) will also be offered.
The final state percentage of ownership is intended to rest at 50%, with various private entities holding shares. In this way, the state will recoup some of its investment while at the same time bringing in the expertise of investors and partners.
Contracts have been signed with instructors and aviation academy specialists in the United Arab Emirates with regard to the phasing in of classes and the management of the facility. Thirteen instructors have received training in South Africa in preparation for the opening of the college. In a related development, the Nigerian Air Force will establish a maintenance base in Ilorin.
Italian company Alenia Aeronautics will manage the project that will be rolled out in the course of 2010. The hangar will be available to private airlines and will contribute to the development of the aviation industry in Kwara State. The maintenance hangar will help to spark developments in associated engineering and commercial fields by creating opportunities for smaller local companies to compete for subcontracts.
Retail (shopping mall)
Location and extent
The site extends over three hectares on Fate Road, Ilorin, in the South Local Government Area.
The Kwara State Government intends to be a 30% shareholder in the project (N500-million, excluding the value of the land], with the balance of equity divided between various private investors. Attractive incentives are in place to make investing in the project worthwhile. The demand for formal retail is strong and good returns are expected. A SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle] will be created where the Kwara State Government and partners will form a company to be called Kwara Mall Develop Centre.
Banks, cinemas and supermarkets are in line to be the anchor tenants. Major retailer Shoprite (which has more than 950 stores across Africa] has expressed its intention to participate. Fast food restaurants include Mr Biggs, Chicken Capitol, Chicken Republic and others. Shops will include jewellery, fashion, furniture, household goods and pharmacy outlets. Medical doctors will have their consulting rooms in the mall and there will be medical clinics.