By Kingsley Adegboye
Olawale Popoola is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of HighBridge Homes Limited, one of the foremost players in Nigeria’s real estate industry.
He explains how good track record helped his firm to blossom despite the Conovirus pandemic pains and sundry issues in this interview with Vanguard Homes & Property
Could you introduce yourself and your organisation?
My name is Olawale Popoola, MD/CEO, HighBridge Homes Limited. I am also an executive member of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria REDAN. Our corporate headquarters is located at Royal Plaza, Bogije, Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos. We are into real estate development. Our operations cover the major spectrum in real estate, and the company has carved a niche for itself as a big player in the booming real estate sector.
We are actually reputed for having one of the largest and banks all over the country. We sell affordable lands to all categories of Nigerians such as the low, middle and high income strata of the society.
Primarily, we are in the business of helping people own their homes, and we do that by acquiring large expanse of lands. Having ensured that it is free from all encumbrances, we then sell the plots to prospective property owners with approved title documents from relevant government agencies. We also assist people to buy property whether luxury, middle level or low cost houses, so that people can have shelter over their heads, at affordable prices.
How did you get into property. business?
I studied civil engineering at Kwara state Polytechnic. Then I read Economics and acquired my BSc in Economics from the University of Ilorin. I have other professional certifications. Armed with all of that, I decided to explore the burgeoning real estate sector; and I am so glad I did. Business has been exciting.
Are you saying that COVID-19 has not taken a toll on the operations of HighBridge Homes, particularly when all sectors of the economy are complaining?
COVID-19 pandemic affected real estate players in different measures. But players who have good track records of performance and capacity to dangle enticing and innovative schemes to consumers of real estate products still closed fantastic deals despite the economic limitations that the pandemic had on people,
For us at HighBridge Homes, Covid 19 pandemic was a blessing because we made so much sales than we did before the pandemic. At the moment, we have sold out two schemes already such as HighBridge Cottage which is located in Sangotedo area of Lekki and HighBridge Oakland, Lekki Free Trade Zone, Lagos.
Currently, we have HighBridge Park Estates. it’s the fastest estate within the Lagos Free Trade Zone, with tremendously high appreciable value. A prospective property buyer can get a patch of land in Ibeju-Lekki at the rate of N970,000 per plot and N540,000 for half plot, respectively. I can assure you that, in two weeks, all the plots in the estate will be sold out because we give our customers prime property at affordable rates. They love us because our property is safe. That’s our hallmark.
What would you say has endeared HighBridge Homes to property buyers?
Our selling point is that we deliver intact and promptly too. HighBridge is known for adding value to our estate even before we start selling out the plots. We construct gate houses, paved roads within the estate, provide power generating plants, perimeter fencing and general amenities for the benefit of our esteemed residents.
We don’t wait until we sell a large volume before we start development. But as soon as we have taken possession we commence development; and that gives our clients confidence because they can interact with us, They see our presence on site, they believe in us; and all of that help our business. Yes; we deliver and give back value to our clients. And they are left with no choice than to patronise us. Our clients don’t need to deal with the natives (omo onile) we shield them from omo onile challenges. They are safe and comfortable with us. We basically bring investors closer to affordable lands and houses without stress.
Could you tell us a little bit about future prospects of HighBridge Homes?
HighBridge Homes is spreading across the nation. Currently, we are running a pre-launch offer on our Benin City Estate. We are also working on the launch of three new estates; two in Lagos and one in Abuja very soon. We are coming up with a unique build and sell estate in one of the prime property zones of Lekki Peninsular, Lagos. The estate is very unique in the sense that a prospective buyer can acquire a plot and be able to express his creativity by building to his or her taste.
We also have a section that will feature HighBridge prototype kind of apartments to cater for for all categories of income earners. For instance, there will be self-contained or studio and one bedroom apartments for beginners and young families, two bedroom and three bedroom terrace apartments for the middle income class and semi detached four and more luxury flats for the upper class.
The Benin project is currently going for 1.6m for a full plot and 850 for half plot. A plot in Benin is 900 square meters which is bigger than what obtains in Lagos (100 ft.) This is pre-launch offer. But by the time we fully launch the scheme, the price will go over two million Naira. This is the right time to get a pre-lunch offer at a cheap rate.
What do you have to say to those who are interested in the pre-launch offer in Benin?
The pre-launch offer is about to close, by the time we lunch it fully the price will go over two million Naira. This is the right time to get a property in our Bennin estate at a cheap rate.