The co-owner of Fourways Mall in Johannesburg is looking to raise R200 million from its existing shareholders.

Accelerate Property Fund (APF) owns 50% of the mall and is looking to raise R200 million from a rights offer. The group will use the money to pay off debt and reposition its finances, particularly in relation to Fourways Mall.

Following its completed expansion in September 2019, Fourways Mall became the largest shopping centre in South Africa, with a gross lettable area of 178,000 sqm and 350 stores.

For comparison Mall of Africa, the nation’s busiest mall, has 131,000 sqm of gross lettable area. Fourways Mall also pips other mega-malls like Menlyn Mall (177,000 sqm) and Gateway in Durban (176,400 sqm) in terms of size.

Despite its size and prime location, Fourways Mall is proving to be a massive headache for its owners.

In APF’s latest financial results for the interim period ended 30 September 2023, the group said that vacancies at the mall increased from 14,349 sqm in March 2023 to 15,109 sqm in the reporting period.

“Management continues to focus on reducing vacancies, with the overall vacancy (including Headlease) of 17.0%,” the group said.

APF is now proceeding with a Rights Offer, which will issue 500 million ordinary shares in the authorised share capital of APF (Rights Offer Shares) for a subscription price of 40 cents per Rights Offer Share.

The group previously announced its intention to raise up to R300 million, but settled on a R200 million rights offer.

“The subscription price represents a discount of 31.65% to the 30-day volume weighted average price of the trading price of APF shares on 16 February 2024, being the last practicable date prior to the finalisation of the Rights Offer Circular,” said the group.