Sell-out success for leading US agency at Zimbali

Keller Williams, the largest estate agency group in the United States of America, has entered the Southern African market with the proverbial “bang”, selling out a R400 million development at ZIMBALI on the Natal North Coast within a few hours during their South African real estate development debut.

The performance of the new local Keller Williams (KW) sales team was even more impressive against the background of a sluggish worldwide property market. The South African market has not seen any larger premium priced developments selling out this fast since 2007.

The ‘Zimbali Suites’ project, which will be developed by IFA Hotels and Resorts (who also owns and operates the prestigious FAIRMONT Hotel at Zimbali), attracted mega interest from buyers all over the country in a masterful display of marketing genius by Keller Williams. IFA decided to appoint Keller Williams, wanting to tap into the enthusiasm and international flair of the prestigious KW international brand – and it seems to have paid off, as hundreds registered their interest to buy at the Zimbali Suites project in the weeks leading up to the official launch on Saturday 2 November.

Keller Williams Realty
In a meteoric rise to the top, KW has taken the American market by storm over the past quarter of a century, aggressively eroding the market share of once leading American estate agencies to become the undisputed leading real estate agency in the USA with over 90 000 agents under their umbrella in the US alone. KW now outsells all other realtors by a large margin. The KW brand is currently on an aggressive international expansion drive and already open in the Western Cape and Gauteng. ‘Zimbali Suites’ was their first venture into the KwaZulu-Natal market.

Keller Williams put in a lot of hard work prior to the launch, taking registrations from almost 1600 people and organizing hundreds of site visits. Almost unthinkable in the current market, buyers started queuing since 02h00 on the morning of the launch in the foyer of the Fairmont Zimbali to get a share of the ‘Zimbali Suites’ action. They were orderly registered between 06h00 and 10h00 in order of arrival, and lavishly entertained with music, food and drink in the Fairmont Zimbali ballroom. At 10h00 Werner Burger, CEO of IFA Hotels and Resorts, officially opened the sales event, auctioning off the Number One position in the line for charity, which quickly attracted a bid of R250 000, which Burger duly accepted to get the proceedings going, although immediately afterwards some were  prepared to pay significantly more to be the first to choose their units to purchase. During the next 6 hours eager investors were taken through the sales process – and single buyers were capped to no more than 5 apartments per individual. Only at around 16h00 in the afternoon all sales were completed, with full deposits paid up and all paperwork concluded. Prices ranged from around R950 000 for a few loss-leading suites, to almost R10 million for a three bedroomed Penthouse – translating to sales prices between R25 000 and R72 000 per square meter – some of the highest prices ever achieved in KwaZulu-Natal.

The sales event was followed up by a grand-scale dinner and after party in the Fairmont with Elvis Blue entertaining investors and guests with his full band – having been flown up especially for the event.

According to Werner Burger, the success of the Zimbali Suites launch bears testimony not only to the prestigious brand of Zimbali as the most desirable South African address, but also to the professional international approach of Keller Williams. “The KW team brought more than just a breath of fresh air to the whole of the South African property market”.

  • JOIN THE TEAM – Keller Williams is on an aggressive expansion drive, aspiring or experienced real estate agents are welcome to find out more at or email

Author: PR Officer

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