In January, a meeting of major German housing associations took place in Frankfurt, in order to establish an initiative to create affordable housing in Africa on the occasion ofthe 100th anniversary celebrations of their existence. In the course of the year, this led to the founding of Housing! for Future, which will realize its first housing construction projects on a “rent to own” basis in Namibia with Polycare starting in 2020. In February, the ceremonial opening of Polycare Namibia by Vice President Nangolo Mtumba took place under great public attention. Unfortunately, due to an unidentifiable partial cable break, production in Namibia was limited in the following months. However, after the fault had been rectified, a large number of buildings, including a small church, could be erected during the year.
In the middle of the year Polycare was prominently involved in the dialogue forum “Sustainable building materials” at the BMZ through GIZ. At the same time, a large Austrian construction group expressed interest in participating in Polycare, which finally led to an extensive due diligence process in the autumn. In July, Waltraud-Stolle-Beteiligungsgesellschaft took over the shares of Polycare UK and Ramon Gray and increased its stake in September in the course of a further capital increase. A visit to the creative center of the renowned designer Alexander von Vegesack in the Domaine de Boisbuchet, France, in August led to plans for a more in-depth cooperation in which a Polycare show house is to be built in the near future within the framework of a workshop. During the summer several film crews (ARTE, MRD, ZDF) shot documentaries about Polycare in both Germany and Namibia, which were broadcast nationwide in winter.
During this film shootings, further meetings with the South African partners were also held to discuss the establishment of Polycare South Africa. The local concept was further developed under the brand name BOXA possibilities and presented to the public in Johannesburg with a model project built with Polyblocks. A realization of the factory construction in already existing production halls is planned for 2020.
In autumn, Polycare accompanied a charity event of Housing! for Future. The proceeds of the event will be used to buy a first plot of land in Namibia. In November, Andreas Kunsmann, who has been supporting Polycare on a freelance basis for over a year, officially moved into the newly designed office in Gehlberg as our new COO. At the end of the year, an official visit to Ryadh took place accompanied by two members of the German Bundestag, during which Polycare’s strategic potential for the oil and desert country Saudi Arabia was demonstrated to local companies and national institutions.