24 February 2014 – Discovery Limited today announced the start of a four-year property development that will see Discovery’s more than 5 000 employees move into a new office development in Sandton. The development will be managed by Growthpoint and Zenprop, two of South Africa’s most established and well-known property developers, through a joint venture. The development, which will be co-owned by Growthpoint and Zenprop, will be one of their premier rental properties and Discovery will be leasing the space over a long-term period.
Discovery’s new offices will serve as the company’s hub for the growing international business that now has operations in South Africa, the US, UK, China and Singapore. It will house all Sandton-based employees who are currently working in four different buildings in the Sandton CBD.
John Robertson, Discovery Limited Executive Director, commented, “One of the key success factors for Discovery is the ability of our people to work in integrated teams across business divisions and areas – an aspect that adds to Discovery’s already innovative and dynamic culture. A working environment that provides optimal space for creativity, connection and growth is critical to foster and encourage innovation in our business.”
Discovery’s Johannesburg-based employees are currently working in four buildings in the Sandton CBD area. The company has grown significantly over the past few years in terms of current businesses as well as new ventures and initiatives. Employing the best people to meet these business requirements is a priority and the growth in the number of employees reflects the rate at which the Discovery business is growing.
Robertson continued, “Over the past few years, our headcount in the Sandton campus has grown each year by an average 6%. In reviewing our current office space it has become clear that we will quickly need more space to meet our long-term capacity needs for the next 15 years.”
Rudolf Pienaar, Divisional Director for Offices from Growthpoint, said, “We are excited to partner with Discovery and Zenprop on what will be one of Sandton’s most iconic landmarks. Discovery’s brief was to design an efficient and modern building that is good for the environment and provides an inviting space for their employees to deliver their best. Most importantly, the new building design had to accommodate their future growth without wasting space, time or money.”
Joint venture partner Zenprop Property Holdings CEO, James Tannenberger, added, “Consisting of two wings, the design of the Discovery building will allow for a phased approach to growing the headquarters as Discovery continues to expand operations. In addition to the benefit of having all their employees in one location, they will also experience a cost saving over the lease period in terms of rental costs and maintenance as the new building will be far more efficient. The building will incorporate a GBCSA (Green Building Council South Africa) green building accredited rating of at least four stars, making it one of the most environmentally sustainable and efficient buildings in Sandton.”
The development is expected to be completed by mid-2017 with all employees relocated to their new office space by January 2018.