Analysing the determinants of the performance of listed Real Estate Investment Trusts in Africa

Chirchir, Linda Chepkorir
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Strathmore University
The emergence of real estate investment trusts (REITs) was expected to be a game changer within the financial markets in Africa. However, reports have shown that there has been low uptake of REITs which has been attributed to the general poor performance of the market, among other challenges. Despite the notable performance struggles within REITs, there has been insufficient examination of the determinants of the financial performance of the REITs. This study analysed the determinants of the financial performance of the listed REITs in Africa. The study specifically focused on the interest rates, inflation rates, gross domestic products (GDP), and firm characteristics effect on financial performance. The study was premised on the resource-based view theory. The research adopted a positivism research philosophy with a descriptive correlational research design being the central design guiding the study. The target population for the study was the 34 listed REITs in South Africa and Three in Nigeria, and One in Kenya. The study adopted a census survey of all the listed REITs in the continent. Data were collected using a secondary data extraction form from the financial statements of the listed REITs between 2010 2020. The collected panel were compiled in Microsoft Excel and analyzed using Stata 16. The research adopted descriptive analysis, correlation analysis, and panel regression analysis. The findings were presented in line with the objectives of the study. The panel regression results indicated that interest rates, inflation rates, GDP, leverage, liquidity, firm age, and size were responsible for 52.70% of the financial performance of listed REITs in Africa. The study concluded that inflation rate, interest rate, and liquidity had an insignificant effect on the financial performance of the listed REITs. Conclusions were further made that GDP, leverage, firm size, and age of the firm had a significant effect on the financial performance of listed firms in Africa. The study recommends that the firms should collaborate with regulatory bodies in the development of institutional benchmarks to guide the management of inflation and interest rates as well as guide REITs investments during economic boom periods. Further, the study recommends the firms should focus on strategies that will guide the management of the debt within the firm as well as advocating for prudent management of the firm assets and investments. Lastly, the firms should develop clear liquidity management measures that will ensure that the firm is able to meet its financial obligations.
A Thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Masters of Business Administration at Strathmore University Business School
Real Estate Investment Trusts_Africa, Performance