SAPOA encourages participation to promote the expansion of South Africa's commercial and industrial property sectors.
Established in 1966, the South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) is a unique, member driven organisation that aims to represent, protect and advance members' commercial and industrial property interests within the property industry in terms of ownership, management and development. Its objectives are based on the principles of the free enterprise system, as the only workable economic system and the inalienability of property ownership, not only for its members but also for the future of South Africa, and its competitiveness in the world arena.
SAPOA encourages its members to share their expertise through active participation in the association. A forum is available, which allows members and non-members to respond to change, decisions and legislation. With regards to government legislative structures, SAPOA has fostered key relationships and maintains a non-political bias. By setting quality standards, and creating educational programmes, SAPOA is also able to be a source of information useful not only to its members but also to government at various levels and the industry as a whole, through a significant involvement in the collection and dissemination of property data and statics. Currently, SAPOA holds a qualifying small enterprise B-BBEE verification certificate and is a level one contributor.
SAPOA's future goals are clear-cut too. They aim to be a nationally accepted and internationally recognised, leading property association. However, even more importantly, SAPOA intend to continue to encourage the concept of private property ownership and development, and promote the rewards to be gained by the formerly disadvantaged members of the South African community. SAPOA is inclusive; it encourages these community members to become involved as owners, developers, employees and managers in the property industry. By encouraging a wider participation in the industry and a greater involvement in the affairs of the association, SAPOA also ultimately aspires to expand its contacts within all levels of government to ensure continued good relations and recognition as the authoritative voice of the commercial and industrial property industry.
The distinctive organisational structure of SAPOA maintains and encourages its member's control and participation. Through an elected National Council, which includes provincial representatives in KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Western Cape, Port Elizabeth, Buffalo City and Gauteng, members are able to determine the policy and direction to be implemented by the secretariat in all nine provinces across South Africa. SAPOA's Chief Executive Officer, Neil Gopal, is supported by a Board of Directors and the following internal departments, Legal, HR & Training, Marketing Services, Town Planning and Financial. This partnership allows for uniform, clear and smooth decision-making and control of SAPOA's day-to-day management.
To stay ahead of property trends and current affairs, SAPOA relies on, and is supported by, a network of prestigious affiliates. These include Women's Property Network (WPN), The South African Council of Shopping Centers (SACSC), Green Building Council of SA (GBCSA), SA Institute of Black Property Practitioner (SAIBPP), SA Institute of Valuers (SAIV), The Property Charter Council (PSCC) and the African Real Estate Society (Afres). Through these relationships and the backing of a number of research and analysis listed property groups, residential property groups, urban regeneration associations and local online resources, SAPOA has a wealth of information at its fingertips, which it is able to share, to inform and to enlighten its members. Global connections such as the Building Owners Managers Association (BOMA), The Property Council of Australia, The Property Council of New Zealand, the British Property Federation, The British Council of Offices and The Real Estate Association of Mauritius also ensure that SAPOA has its finger on the pulse of the international property market. This type of skill set and information-sharing allows SAPOA to support its members to its fullest capacity.
Furthermore, it also offers an extensive training schedule made available to all members. All courses are held in partnership with universities nationally allowing members to keep their expertise and certifications relevant and up to date.