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Country Club keeps 20-year promise

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino, Sven Thieme hand a cheque for the remaining N$40 million of a loan it took from the GIPF in 1994, to David Nujoma, CEO of the GIPF. (Photograph by Lorato Khobetsi)

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino, Sven Thieme hand a cheque for the remaining N$40 million of a loan it took from the GIPF in 1994, to David Nujoma, CEO of the GIPF. (Photograph by Lorato Khobetsi)

The Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino this week paid back the last instalment of a loan it took from the Government Institution Pension Fund in 1994.
The total value of the loan stood at N$282 million, including the nominal interest rate of 13,6% and compound interest charged on late payments.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino, Sven Thieme handed over the last  amount of N$40 million to the CEO of GIPF, David Nuyoma.
N$ 10 million is from the hotel’s own resources while the other N$30 million will be paid over in the form of preference shares over a period of 10 years funded through FNB.
According to David Nujoma, CEO of the GIPF, the relationship between the two government institutions was hatched when an agreement was made to fund the construction phase of the hotel through various loans and the government provided guarantees for some of the loans.
“The strategic decision was made in line with Regulation 28 of the Pension Funds Act which required pension funds to invest a minimum of 35% of assets in Namibia. This regulation further allows pension funds to invest 5% of assets in unlisted investments to ensure that Namibian domestic savings are channelled into the local economy,” he said.
The hotel was one of the first institutions to receive loans from GIPF, through a combination of a discretionary portfolio held by asset management companies and GIPF’s initial unlisted investment scheme.
In total, loans disbursed to the hotel by the Fund amounted to N$105million. N$75million were provided through a discretionary portfolio held by an asset manager and were underwritten by the government. N$30million was provided via the now defunct GIPF Development Capital Portfolio.
“This relationship did not only facilitate the growth of our economy in terms of strategic infrastructure, promotion of tourism and the creation of the much needed employment but had indeed also generated more value to the fund and its members,” said Nuyoma.
Thieme said that it was their commitment that allowed them to pay back the loan.
“As in life, so in business, there have been challenges which we have had to overcome without losing sight of our strategic objectives. While to a large degree the Windhoek Country Club has been in a profitable trading position for quite some time now and we possess cash-reserves, we have not rested on our laurels. In fact, we have completed numerous upgrades and we continue to look at areas where we can improve our product and add value to our guests,” he said.

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