Written on the 18 September 2014 by Nick Nichols


VILLA World is poised to inject new life in the sleepy seaside village of Jacobs Well with plans for a 107-lot housing project to cater for demand from the booming Yatala industrial region.

The company acquired the development site from receivers earlier this year and has laid plans to begin development early next year.

The project marks an increase in Villa World’s interest in the Gold Coast, a market it has largely avoided in pursuit of higher yielding developments in Victoria, Brisbane and north Queensland.

Villa World only has two Gold Coast projects – Brookside at Ormeau and Longhill Rise at Gilston – but is now pushing on with its third, a 108-lot subdivision known as Parkside, at Coomera.

By comparison, it has eight projects under way in Brisbane, and another six in the pipeline there, along with developments in Gladstone, Victoria and NSW – including two at Casuarina on the Tweed Coast.

‘’Villa World is a Gold Coast company but we have not done too many projects here in recent years for the same reasons a lot of other developers haven’t,” Villa World CEO Craig Treasure (pictured) tells Gold Coast Business News.

‘’But that market is coming back to be quite strong,” he says.

The Jacobs Well site, bounded by Pimpama Jacobs Well Road and Helmore Road, was earmarked for a high-density development almost a decade ago.

The project, which has passed through at least two developers’ hands previously, failed to proceed and the property was seized by financiers.

Jacobs Well has a small urban footprint and major development sites typically are hard to find.

Financial details of the purchase have not been disclosed by Villa World.

“That site is a particular opportunity that we had to acquire on quite attractive terms,” says Treasure.

He says Jacobs Well was targeted after the company’s sales success of the Brookside estate at Ormeau.

“They’re in relative proximity and we found there was very strong demand for owner-occupiers and first-home buyers at Ormeau,” he says.

“We think the Jacobs Well project will appeal to the same buyer demographic and we can produce very cost-effective house-and-land packages there.

“If you look at that part of the world, a lot of people are sick of the traffic issues and there a lot of jobs in the Yatala region, so we see it as an opportunity to deliver a good product that suits that market.”

Jacobs Well is home to the Roche family’s $1 billion Calypso Bay development, where waterfront land is selling from $450,000.

Villa World is negotiating sewerage connection before proceeding with the Jacobs Well project, which Treasure says could take up to nine months.

Negotiations for the infrastructure work are understood to include the Roche family.

‘’We’ll time our project to suit when these services are available,” says Treasure.

Villa World is targeting at profit increase of at least 5 per cent this financial year after returning to the black with a $19.06 million profit in FY14.

The company has taken advantage of a strong cash position and growing confidence in the property market by boosting its national development portfolio to 3925 lots, up 48 per cent a year ago.

Author: Nick Nichols





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