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Monday, December 31, 2007

Gadang looking at busy year ahead

BRIGHT OUTLOOK: Executive director Ling Hock Hing (right) and director Takhiyuddin Abdullah speak on a Gadang project early this year

Gadang Holdings Bhd, a construction and property firm, plans to launch a commercial building and two condominium blocks along Jalan Ampang in Selangor by the third quarter of next year, sources said.

Business Times understands that Gadang is in advanced talks with landowners in the area to develop the project on a joint-venture basis.

"Gadang is looking at building one block of office units with a total of 190,000 sq ft and two blocks of high-end condominiums with 350,000 sq ft. The units will have unique designs catering to local and foreign tastes," a source said.

The source said that based on valuation in the area, which currently exceeds RM500 per sq ft, Gadang is expected to reap a gross development value (GDV) of RM220 million from the project, which has yet to be given a name.

Gadang is also in talks with landowners in Johor to build residential and commercial units that could easily generate an additional RM250 million in GDV for the company, the source added.

Gadang managing director and chief executive officer Datuk Kok Onn declined to comment on the two proposed projects when contacted by Business Times.

He did, however, give details on the main board-listed company's plans for next year.

Kok said that Gadang had acquired about 4ha in Tanjung Bungah, Penang, to build luxury semi-detached homes, slated for launch in early 2009.

"We are looking at a GDV of RM60 million from this project, which will be our maiden development in Penang.

"We are sourcing for more land in Penang to expand our presence there," he said.

Kok was optimistic on prospects for the property sector next year, saying that the industry would remain encouraging with new buyers entering the market.

He also said Gadang will continue to launch housing and commercial projects next year, with the biggest in Tampoi, Johor, where it has 8ha, which will be developed in phases.

The first phase, comprising 40 shops and 512 serviced apartments, is expected to be launched early next year and to generate RM90 million GDV.

"We are planning to build a shopping mall within the development once we have established what we want to do with the remaining land," Kok said.

He added that Gadang is also in advanced negotiations for some land in the Klang Valley and Johor.

The deals, when concluded, will have a combined GDV of more than RM1 billion, Kok said.

By New Straits Times (by Sharen Kaur)

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