Property Flash


February 21 2024

Boxwood Property Fund, an unlisted real estate group, has announced the appointment of Sarah Divaris as its new Chief Operating Officer (COO). At the age of 29, Divaris is one of the youngest COOs in the property sector.

Holding a Business Science Degree in Finance and Economics along with a CFA Charterholder designation, Sarah’s combination of financial acumen, strategic mindset and creative flair have been instrumental in shaping Boxwood’s trajectory, its CEO Rob Kane said.

Sarah started working at Boxwood eight years ago. At the time, Boxwood was in its early stages, lacking assets or formal structure. Sarah has said she was drawn to the vision of building one of the largest private property portfolios in the country under the mentorship of Kane and Chairman John Oliphant and committed herself to the journey.

Her early days involved planning, capital raising and pursuing the company’s first major acquisition. As the company evolved, so did her responsibilities, now spanning a spectrum of strategic and operational initiatives to manage and grow Boxwood’s R3bn property portfolio across sectors and geographies.

Her commitment to driving value was showcased in her first landmark project, the revitalisation of a mixed-use asset in the centre of Cape Town, where she achieved a 31% increase in the asset’s value within the first 12 months.

Divaris says she enjoys the design side of Boxwood’s redevelopment work and has been instrumental in delivering busy food markets and quirky, sophisticated common areas. She collaborates with architects, interior designers, design students and local artists to incorporate public art installations and integrates quirky architectural elements to create visually distinctive properties.

Divaris has partnered with the UCT organisation Phaphama, which she initiated to provide support and funding to entrepreneurs in Khayelitsha.

Her leadership philosophy centres on collaboration, empowerment, and alignment with Boxwood’s strategic goals. She is committed to driving innovation, fostering talent and shaping the future of women in property.

Kane says Divaris’ promotion is thoroughly deserved and Boxwood looks forward to a dynamic and successful future under Sarah’s capable leadership.

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