Mr Pindoria, thank you for the opportunity to shed some light on the opportunities in holiday real estate in The Gambia with you.
We want to start at the beginning. Was engineering and architecture part of your childhood dreams?
During my school days, I was very good at drawing. So, it was my childhood dream to become a civil engineer and a contractor.
Somewhere along the way, you decided to deviate from your profession in civil engineering and focus on real estate. What led to that decision?
Being a civil engineer by profession, I found Real Estate Development more exciting than civil engineering projects. Although, real estate requires civil engineering too. I realised there is a huge gap between the demand and supply of real estate properties in Africa. Therefore, I decided to focus more on real estate developments than on contracting.
Being present in many African markets, including Kenya, Ghana and Gambia, tell us, why Africa? And why The Gambia?
I found The Gambia safer than Kenya in terms of security. The people of Gambia are very welcoming, friendly and calm. There are many other factors that make The Gambia better than other African countries for living or doing business: Political Stability, Demand for Quality Housing, Amazing climate and beautiful coastline, low cost of living, Greenery and Pollution Free environments, and less crowded.
Why do you think The Gambia is a good destination for people looking for a vacation home?
As mentioned in my previous answer, the Gambia is very peaceful, with amazing and friendly people, diverse culture, hospitality, political stability, security, low cost of living compared to other west African countries, and easy access to neighbouring countries like Senegal & Guinea Bissau.
What makes your company different from others in the market?
Being present in The Gambia since 2004, do you see any changes in investment demand trends?
Indeed, I have seen a drastic change in investment trends over the last five years, right after the change of the government. The Gambia is now booming and has a high potential to grow quickly. There are a lot of Gambians-based diasporas that are now investing in the Gambia in real estate. Many young Gambians are also making their start-ups and becoming entrepreneurs.
Where do you think the infrastructure and hospitality service development is heading in The Gambia?
Gambia is really doing well in terms of infrastructure with the recent EXIM Bank & OIC projects, including roads, water & electricity. I pray the hospitality industry should pick up, too, once the global issues such as the Russia-Ukraine war and pandemic have been stabilised.
One of your recent projects is Airport Residency. Apart from many other excellent amenities, it boasts a prime location just next to the airport. Who did you have in mind when thinking of a dream home?
I always have our clients and their needs in my mind before creating any development.
Airport Residency is not the first gated community you developed. What are the benefits of living in one?
Living in a gated community provides safety & security, privacy, a peaceful environment, a quality neighbourhood, a sense of community, leisure facilities, higher property values and annual property appreciation, safe play for children, and higher home standards.
Having four (correct me if I am wrong) ongoing construction projects in The Gambia, tell us more about the recent one – The Diplomat.
The Diplomat is going to be one iconic & landmark development of The Gambia offering spectacular views across the region's business hub, which is set within a central location in the Kanifing Institutional Zone, considered as a new commercial hub & Business Centre of The Gambia offering tremendous infrastructure, modern facilities and easy accessibility. The Diplomat consists of two towers with 8 & 9 floors of state-of-the-art commercial space and residential apartments. There is a broad and different choice of abundantly finished studios, one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments and penthouses at exceptional prices. Car parking spaces are available. The Diplomat is put to add a newfound quality lifestyle for homeowners and businesses. The development is expected to commence in October 2022 and be complete by October 2025.
Managing and leading a company of more than 200 employees in The Gambia and having projects in Ghana, you must find challenges in balancing personal and business life. How do you manage?
I find passion in managing my organisation and our employees. I constantly focus on training and motivating our employees so that they grow together with the company.
What makes you happy?
I am always happy to learn new things on a daily basis in my personal or professional life.
Thank you for your time and opportunity. We are enthusiastic to see how else Swami India will add up to the lifestyle options in The Gambia in the future. We wish you all the best.