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Saturday, December 8, 2007

Group targets China and Vietnam markets

Having established a foothold in India and Cambodia, Sunway City Bhd (SunCity) is now eyeing the booming China and Vietnam property markets.

According to senior general manager of sales and marketing Sarena Cheah, the active expansion of SunCity’s offshore property activities is in line with the company’s plan to add another earnings stream and enlarge its regional presence.

“Although Malaysia will continue to be the company’s core revenue contributor for many years to come, we feel it is time to venture into other promising markets in the region,” she said.

Under the company’s five-year plan, it is targeting 30% of its revenue to come from overseas projects from less than 5% presently.

Meanwhile, SunCity’s upcoming real estate investment trust (REIT), which will have an asset value of more than RM3bil, will turn the company into a pure property development concern.

The listing of the REIT by next September will provide SunCity with the needed resources to expand locally and abroad.

“In China, we are looking at the southern provinces of Chengdu and Guangzhou, and are now identifying the right partners with land for development to work with. In Vietnam, we hope to start our maiden development in Ho Chi Minh City within the next one year,” Cheah said.

In India, SunCity will be launching its first development - Sunway Opus Grand Residency - next April.

Located on 35 acres in Hyderabad, the project featuring 3,400 high-end condominiums with total saleable area of 5 million sq ft has a gross development value of RM1.5bil.

The units will be priced from RM280 to RM320 (3,500 to 4,000 rupees) per sq ft.

Undertaken jointly with Indian partner Opus Developers & Builders Pte Ltd, the three-phase project will be completed in four to five years.

In Cambodia, Sunway Toul Kok City has been very successful and has sealed SunCity’s reputation in Phnom Penh as a high quality, high-end developer.

SunCity chief financial officer Koong Wai Seng said the company also saw potential to export its expertise in integrated resort management overseas.

“We have developed expertise in managing retail complexes as well as healthcare and educational institutions. The expanding regional markets has created a growing need for such expertise,” Koong said.

The company has ventured into shopping mall management in Shenzhen and Chengdu, and is managing two of its own hotels in Hanoi and Phnom Penh.

By The Star

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