From cars to construction to concerts, the Ritek Group is bringing exciting opportunities to Angola
Strong economic growth in recent years has provided a wide range of opportunities in Angola for smart investors and businessmen. Antonio Cristovao and his two brothers saw there was a need in the country for rental car agencies, and from that their business rapidly expanded into other sectors where they saw the chance to launch successful enterprises. Ritek
Rent-a-Car was opened in 2007 and from there took advantage of its connections in Spain and Portugal to become an intermediary helping businesses in Europe to explore opportunities in the beckoning Angolan market.
“Many Portuguese and Spanish businesses that wanted to invest in Angola counted on Ritek to open doors for them,” Antonio Cristovao explains. “From there, with the financial strength we gained from that, we started to move into other business areas, including hotels.”
Ritek began the construction from scratch of a hotel in Benguela that is expected to be completed in the first part of this year. The company is preparing to start a second hotel project in Benguela that should be finished in 2012, and is also working on other hotel projects in Mozambique.
|“MANY PORTUGUESE AND SPANISH BUSINESSES THAT WANTED TO INVEST IN ANGOLA COUNTED ON RITEK TO OPEN DOORS FOR THEM.” |
ANTONIO CRISTOVAO, CEO of Ritek investment Group
Ritek has even more irons in the fire, including agricultural investments in partnership with Incatema, a Spanish company, and public works projects working with the Angolan government. The company has started a construction company that is part of a project that will build 1 million homes in Angola.
In addition to the construction unit, Ritek has started other business units, for instance Kwanza Port and Nova Pet, which provide consulting services focusing on the Angolan economy and different ways of investing in Angola.
Companies that grow rapidly and take on challenges in different sectors of the economy can sometimes find it difficult to deal with sudden success. Not so in Ritek, which relies on the extended family of the founders to manage the various different business units.
“We’re a family business, founded by three brothers, and most of our staff are members of our family,” Mr. Cristovao says. “That means that we can be much more demanding with them, many of whom are sons, cousins, nephews or some other relation to us.”
The informal nature of the company’s family structure means Ritek can participate in events that the family members feel a special attachment to, such as sponsoring the first International Jazz Festival in Luanda.
Mr. Cristovao was familiar with the Cape Town International Jazz Festival from years of living in the South African city, and had seen the positive economic impact of the event. He had Ritek sponsor the festival in South Africa, and he and his family were proud to then bring a similar, though smaller, series of concerts to the Angolan capital as well.