Leading construction solutions company Profica recently added the completion of a new office for General Electric and a fit-out project for Ericsson in Cote d’Ivoire to its growing portfolio of projects in the country. Project manager Aaron Bigmore says that since he started projects there in 2012, development has boomed.
“Development has just exploded in Cote D’Ivoire. Abidjan is going to be a main hub in Francophone West Africa.”
During the last decade, Profica has successfully delivered projects in over 20 African countries and is known as an expert project manager across Africa’s challenging conditions. Cote d’Ivoire has been tagged for expansion and the company, which also delivers development origination services, believes that it has enormous growth potential. Fortunately, the Cote D’Ivoire government is making it easy for developers to come in, according to Bigmore. Another major success factor is that contractors are very competent in Ivory Coast. “A number of larger construction contractors have an established presence in Cote D’Ivoire, so you can trust in a high level of experience, a strong delivery record and clear standards.”
Corporate Real Estate Services, known as fit-outs, are a strong delivery point for Profica and leading companies contract Profica repeatedly across the continent. Profica has completed other projects for GE, including two fit-outs in Nigeria and the company headquarters in Johannesburg. The base build and fit-out for the 1500sqm office in Cote D’Ivoire was the eighth project for Ericsson in Africa, with previous projects completed in Senegal, Angola, Rwanda, Zambia, Johannesburg, as well as technical due diligences and project set ups in Burkina Faso, Chad, Niger and Sierra Leone.
“We’ve delivered successfully on a number of projects,” says Bigmore. “Our local insight and experience is key – we know how Africa works and have insight into the contractors operating there, a vital component of project success. Importantly, we have French speaking Project Managers, which is a huge advantage in Francophone Africa.”“When it comes to major international clients, there are a number of considerations to be able to comply with the company’s own international requirements – particularly when it comes to IT, security and connectivity,” says Bigmore. “We need to have the expertise to review and adjust designs accordingly from the outset, educating the local teams on these aspects.” Each country also has standards you need to comply with, particularly on bigger buildings, explains Bigmore. “Cote d’Ivoire standards are quite stringent and well implemented.”
According to Bigmore, green building considerations are also becoming more prominent. “We look at those aspects and implement as much as possible, from energy efficient lighting to reducing the carbon footprint by using more locally produced materials, including carpeting.”
The next project in Cote d’Ivoire is the retrofit and full refurbishment of an 18 story high rise tower, which is currently in design stage. Profica is expecting a number of other projects to kick off this year. “We are well established in Cote D’Ivoire and ready to tackle more major projects in this growing region.”
Aaron Bigmore, Project Manager, Profica