“ERANI PROPERTY AGENCY” - Building Markets


by Building Markets
March 30, 2008

PDT inspires Dili’s first Property Agency“ERANI PROPERTY AGENCY”And 19 homeowners earn $231 000 Dili, Timor-Leste, 18 March 2008 – In September 2007 Peace Dividend Trust (PDT) hired Mr. Carlito Alves to procure a building to act as PDT’s office in Dili, Timor-Leste. Within days Mr. Alves had sourced a number of potential properties in a range of locations around Dili and PDT eventually chose a property in Balide. Peace Dividend Trust was so impressed by Mr, Alves skills that it encouraged him to try and establish a much needed property agency service in Dili. “PDT gave me the idea to establish a Property Agency. The idea seemed so obvious seeing as Dili did not have one. After making a few calculations I decided to embark on a totally new initiative. PDT also gave me some very basic but critical information on how I might structure and operate my new business. While I received very little in the in the way of material help from PDT they provided an idea and an inspiration. The business has grown tremendously in the last ninety days, and I have great hopes for expansion. One obstacle I have is the exceedingly high cost of mobile phone services in Timor-Leste. As a small business that deals with customers exclusively by mobile phone I am constantly shocked at the high cost of TT, it really hurts,” said Mr. Alves. In the past 90 days Mr. Alves has sourced 19 properties for a range of international individual and business clients. The total amount of income generated to date for the homeowners is over $230 000 per year. This is equivalent to 226 full time jobs for a year at the minimum wage rate. “It is amazing how much impact I can have as just one person with a good idea and a little help”, said Mr. Alves. Mr. Mirko Fernandez, Canadian working for UNMIT, and had this to say about Mr. Alves: “I was looking for a decent house for weeks if not months. Then I received an SMS advertisement telling me about ERANI. I really like the idea of supporting the economy through a Timorese family. I found Mr. Alves to be knowledgeable, prompt, honest and motivated. I would recommend him to anyone”. Mr. Alves uses a PDT idea to advertise directly, efficiently and cheaply. He likes to advertise by SMS messages. “Foreigners and Timorese rely heavily on SMS messages to communicate with each other. I thought that instead of the usual rumour and gossip which dominates SMS messaging that it can provide an excellent platform for advertising. So I suggested it to Carlito. He tells me that his standard SMS advertisement has accounted for 25% of this business. Not bad for an SMS!” Edward Rees, Country Director for Peace Dividend Trust. Every business operating in Timor-Leste is invited to visit our offices to discuss how we can help them access more international business opportunities. About Peace Dividend Trust Timor-LestePeace Dividend Trust is an international NGO, headquartered in Ottawa, Canada. The Timor-Leste project is funded by AusAID. PDT is a non-profit entity. All of its services are provided to the community free of charge. For more information, please contact: Carlito AlvesErani Property AgencyMobile +670 728 9495Email: [email protected] Peace Dividend TrustEstrada de Balide, Dili, East TimorPhone: 332 2823 Email: [email protected]

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