Private Property and

Absa partnership

South Africa’s online property marketplace, Private Property and Absa Bank have formed a strategic partnership, providing information, tools and inspiration to ignite the property industry. This serves as a significant catalyst for innovation and consumer education, while offering benefits for industry stakeholders.

Private Property has over the last 22 years developed products and services for agents, agencies, developers and commercial real estate stakeholders that ultimately bring them closer to property shoppers. The organisation’s brand promise is to initiate and sustain property conversations that enable consumers to realise their property goals.

Private Property’s alternative approach to this market is underpinned by the value placed on partnerships with all real estate players.

Private Property and

Absa partnership

South Africa’s online property marketplace, Private Property and Absa Bank have formed a strategic partnership, providing information, tools and inspiration to ignite the property industry. This serves as a significant catalyst for innovation and consumer education, while offering benefits for industry stakeholders.

Private Property has over the last 22 years developed products and services for agents, agencies, developers and commercial real estate stakeholders that ultimately bring them closer to property shoppers. The organisation’s brand promise is to initiate and sustain property conversations that enable consumers to realise their property goals.

Private Property’s alternative approach to this market is underpinned by the value placed on partnerships with all real estate players.

Amasi Mwela, CEO of Private Property, was previously the CEO of educational finance provider, Fundi, and joined Private Property in January 2019. We asked him to share his thoughts on leadership, the property industry and his vision for homeownership in South Africa.

You came to property from a finance and educational background. What were the biggest lessons that you have learned about property since taking the reins at Private Property?

The realisation that there is a desperate lack of information for people aspiring to enter the property market, which meant that we needed to relook how property information was packaged and served. I also learned that buying a property is much more complex than what I gave it credit for. Property is intertwined in every aspect of our lives, from growth as a family to the security of the family and ultimately the wealth and prosperity of our nation. This realisation has had an impact on how we develop filters that close the gap between searching for and finding a property that is best suited to the customer’s need.

You've often been called a "next-generation leader". Please describe your leadership style and what that term means to you.

Being known as a leader that nurtures and develops people is something that I aspire to. I firmly believe that if you develop people in your business, people will develop your business, but it starts with being authentic first. An authentic leader gives others permission to be authentic too.

Another characteristic that I value is that of intentional listening, not just listening to the loudest voices, but finding those voices that have grown quiet over the years. New-world problem-solving needs a diverse lens to filter challenges through. Only then can we create new solutions for our customers – solutions that come from the inside out. Leadership matters in the way that it signals intent.

One of the key responsibilities of a leader is to build a cohesive and trusting leadership team that leads by example, especially now, in the remote working environment. Trust has never been more important.

As an industry-shaper, what role do you see yourself playing beyond the good stewardship of Private Property?

Homeownership represents massive economic opportunity, and we work tirelessly alongside our real estate partners to unleash its full potential. However, my role beyond Private Property is to open homeownership up to millions more. Not owning a home by choice is one thing, but never even having the hope of owning your own home is a reality for millions of South Africans. Playing a role in tackling this challenge is both daunting and exciting and keeps me awake at night.

What are your hopes and dreams for the company and for the industry?

My hope for Private Property is that we grow and develop our people first. In my experience, the growth of our business will be the only result. That, and being a well-loved South African brand.

My dream for the industry is that it opens itself up more intentionally to the immense opportunity that we see in the underserviced sectors of our society, such as the affordable housing market. We also need to create more opportunities for youth in real estate. We are merely scratching the surface of what is possible.

What changes would you like to see in the industry?

We think that the industry would benefit from more cooperation. Our partnership with Absa is one way in which Private Property is leading this change. Our partnership has the customer’s need at its core. Partnering allows us to be agile, to really listen to the customer and to communicate in a language that is accessible and empowering.

We also think that the industry should embrace technology more aggressively. Having recently hosted the largest consumer-facing digital event, The Virtual Property Show in partnership with Absa, is testament to the consumer readiness for digital enablement.

How is Private Property navigating these challenging times?

Private Property is not immune to the challenges that face South Africa and the world at large. Staying true to our innovative roots means that every day we choose to be agile, listen to our customers and constantly evolve our business to offer relevant products and services that plough back value. Investing in our team and listening to our people has helped us steer our ship through stormy times. We will continue to work with our real estate partners, and especially Absa, to provide property consumers with information, tools and inspiration to realise their homeownership goals.

Tell us a bit about yourself outside of work.

I value spending time with family, good friends and surrounding myself with trusted colleagues who bring their authentic selves to the table.

What's something that most people don't know about you?

I grow my own fruit and veggies!