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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

CDL, Wachovia in S$432 million Cliveden at Grange deal

SINGAPORE: City Developments Ltd (CDL) and US-based Wachovia Group have formed a joint venture to buy two tower blocks at CDL’s luxury Cliveden at Grange (pix) for S$432.4 million (RM995.6 million). Under the agreement, Wachovia Development Corp will take a 60% stake
and CDL will hold the rest through subsidiary City Venture Properties (CVP) in the venture, called Grange 100. The tower blocks have 22 units each. The average price for all units purchased is S$3,750 psf. Cliveden at Grange, near Orchard Road, has four 24-storey towers with 3- (2,153 sq ft) and 4-bedroom (2,842 sq ft) apartments.

By The EDGE Singapore

PJCC poised to take off

PETALING JAYA: PJCC Development Sdn Bhd is planning to launch two blocks of serviced apartments in its one-stop commercial hub, the PJ Commercial Centre (PJCC) by early next year.

An artist's impression of the PJCC skyline

Comprising 450 units in two blocks called PJCC Avenue and PJCC Tower in Petaling Jaya South near Sunway, the units will have built-up areas ranging from 550 sq ft to 1,800 sq ft.

PJCC Development’s marketing manager Vincent Tai said, the apartments would have various layouts to cater to young professionals.

Tai: PJCC's serviced apartments cater to young professionals

He said the selling prices of the apartment, which have yet to be finalised, are expected to be in the affordable range of between RM200 and RM220 psf.

“The gross development value (GDV) of the apartments is expected to be RM80 million,” said Tai, adding that the 33-acre PJCC, which is designed around a six-acre lake, is set to be a commercial hub once completed in 2014 with its Auto City, Retail City, Lake City and Tower City precincts.

It will house more than 2.9 million sq ft of commercial space upon completion, with a total GDV of RM500 million. “Phase 1, which is the Retail City comprising 302 units of 3-, 6- and 8-storey
shop offices, has recorded a take-up rate of 95% since its launch seven months ago,”
said Tai.

The 3-storey shop offices with built-ups of 4,412 sq ft are priced from RM785,000, while the 6-storey strata shop offices with built-ups of 1,228 sq ft are priced from RM188,900 per unit. The developer is looking at an enbloc sale for its 8-storey shop office, which has a built-up of 20,425 sq ft and is priced at RM3.9 million.

Phase 2, comprising the Auto City complex, bazaar complex, office tower, hotel and a shopping complex, is scheduled for launch next year. The area is accessible from the New Pantai

PJCC Development's previous projects include the 20-storey MCB Plaza and a 14-storey condominium project, both on Changkat Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur, Taman Ampang Mewah in Ampang and Taman Sri Pangkor on Pangkor Island.

By theSun (By Tim Leonard)

Quill Capita posts RM4.9m 3Q net profits

KUALA LUMPUR: Quill Capita Trust Bhd, a real estate investment trust (REIT) declared RM4.9 million in net profits or 1.66 sen per share for the third quarter ended Sep 30, 2007, along with a revenue of RM7.39 million.

For the cumulative nine-month period, net profits amounted to RM12.21 million or 4.74 sen a share while revenue was RM19.31 million. The sum of dividends declared during the period amounted to 3.99 sen per share. Meanwhile, net assets stood at RM1.06 per share as at Sept 30.

Quil Capital closed 2 sen lower at RM1.12 yesterday.


Nusajaya land prices may double in 2 years

KUALA LUMPUR: Land prices in Nusajaya in the Iskandar Development Region may double in the next two years, making UEM World Bhd a direct beneficiary, said Credit Suisse.

“Coupled with South Johor Economic Region’s (SJER) proximity to rapidly growing Singapore, which has limited land and the wide gap between their land prices, we believe land prices in Nusajaya can only head up.

“They have already doubled from RM7 psf to RM15 psf in the past one year without much real development, and now with the Middle East investors coming in to quicken the pace of development, it is not unrealistic for land prices to double in another two years, which is the average price appreciation in other Asian special economic zones.

“This would bring land prices to the RM31 psf in our RNAV of RM6 per share for UEM,” Credit Suisse said in a report after taking UEM World’s senior director of corporate development on a non-deal roadshow to the United States and meeting 20 of its clients in San Francisco, Boston, and New York from Oct 22-26.

“While implementation of the SJER might not be clear-cut due to politics and culture, (government investment arm and UEM World major shareholder) Khazanah (Nasional Bhd) is devoting its efforts to develop the SJER and is working with Singapore for mutual benefit,” Credit Suisse said, maintaining UEM World as an outperform.

It said despite an absence of positive news flow from UEM World, the senior director assured clients that negotiations were progressing well and two major announcements were a possibility over the next two to three months: joint ventures between UEM and Middle Eastern investors to develop its land in Nusajaya, and the tier one theme park operator in Nusajaya.

On the latter, Credit Suisse said The Edge weekly had reported that Walt Disney Company had expressed its seriousness to build a theme park on a 200ha site in Nusajaya and had specified its requirements.

It said many clients had pointed out that the healthcare division was out of place, and that UEM World had had a poor track record overseas; hence, UEM World should streamline its group structure to be more focused on its property development in Nusajaya.

Credit Suisse said the UEM World official responded that it planned to keep the healthcare division and build up its non-concession business, which has better margins.

“UEM plans to spend RM400 million to expand its cement capacity to meet demand from the Iskandar Development Region by 2010, and another RM1.5 billion over the next three years to fund its property development in Nusajaya and acquire land in the Klang Valley,” it said.


MIA seeks enhanced regulatoryrole, better recognition

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA) is considering the introduction of a competency assessment for accountants according to international standards and enhanced regulatory functions of the MIA that would enable it to participate more actively in designing surveillance mechanisms and disciplinary actions against errant accountants.

These are among the amendments to the Accountants’ Act 1967 that the professional board is proposing to enhance local accountants’ competitiveness on the global front.

MIA president Nik Mohd Hasyudeen Yusoff said: “We are working with the Ministry of Finance and have issued a consultative document regarding the proposed amendments to various key players such as the Securities’ Commission, Bank Negara, universities and other professional accounting bodies.”

“We have obtained their feedback and we will finalise the proposed amendments by the end of the year. We hope they would be tabled at the Parliament as soon as possible,” he said.

Nik Mohd Hasyudeen said the MIA was looking at how the accounting profession could be restructured in order to be resilient towards the changes in a competitive environment, partly due to globalisation, in which changes to the Accountants’ Act would be required.

He said: “The Act was enacted in 1967 based on the realities of that time. However, as we move forward, we find that the landscape of accounting has changed.”

“We want to have a more robust process in the accounting environment, so that we can react faster to make sure public confidence in the capital market is sustained,” he told reporters after the opening ceremony of the National Accountants Conference 2007 themed “Accountants: Towards Excellence, Achieving World Class” here yesterday.

Nik Mohd Hasyudeen said: “For instance, under the current Act, we find difficulty in addressing the distress in the capital market because of the way the Act is structured.

“With the amendments, we would be able to investigate alleged accounting malpractices faster, as we are seeking to enlarge the number of investigative committees that would speed up the process and help prevent adverse reports from circulating in the capital market.”

Additionally, he said the proposed amendments would allow the professional body to recognise more overseas accountants, and vice versa. He said: “There are accountants from Vietnam that are interested in practising in our country, and we want to open the pathways for them.”

“In return, we also want to look at how our members can also be accepted as professional accountants overseas as we believe it’s a two-way process,” Nik Mohd Hasyudeen said.

By The EDGE (By

Dijaya enters RM200m JV

KUALA LUMPUR: Dijaya Corporation Bhd has entered a joint-venture (JV) agreement with Aliran Firasat Sdn Bhd to develop the latter’s commercial land in Pekan Baru Sungai Buloh, Selangor, for an estimated gross development value of RM200 million.

It said yesterday that it had entered into the JV via its subsidiary Nadi Jelita Sdn Bhd to develop 8.43 hectares of land into an integrated commercial development comprising shop-offices together with car park facilities and other necessary infrastructure.

Nadi Jelita will finance the project using cash advances funded by Dijaya via internally generated funds and bank borrowings. Nadi Jelita will be responsible for all related work and should the cost exceed RM40 million, it will be borne by Aliran Firasat.

The land has a net book value of RM65.6 million and the total development cost of the project excluding land is RM110 million.


WCT to build AEON mall

KUALA LUMPUR: WCT Engineering Bhd has accepted a RM185 million contract from AEON Co (M) Bhd for the proposed design and build, testing and commissioning of a shopping complex in Johor Bahru.

In a statement yesterday, WCT said the project for the three-storey shopping complex with a gross floor area of 895,000 sq ft was located on a parcel of land in Pulai.

The project, expected to be completed by January 2009, was expected to contribute positively to its earnings and net assets for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2008, it added.


Consortium eyes strategic stake in Mah Sing

A consortium of Middle East and Malaysian blue-chip institutional and individual investors is eyeing a strategic stake in established property developer Mah Sing Group Bhd, sources said yesterday.

The local, Abu Dhabi and Kuwait investors are the ones who have been steadily purchasing real estate in Malaysia and investing in the property boom in the country in recent months.

In control: With a 40 percent shareholding Leong would continue to maintain a controlling stake in the firm

"They are eyeing a strategic stake in Mah Sing to complete part of the Middle East-Southeast Asia property value chain," one source told Business Times.

"Partnering with the current major shareholders and management of Mah Sing will likely be the vehicle of choice for the investors' Southeast Asian expansion plans.

"This is especially due to its strong cash balances, low gearing, solid management and good track record. Mah Sing, with its financial muscle and niche offerings, is of strong appeal to the consortium of investors," the source added.

The sources declined to identify the potential investors in the consortium and Mah Sing officials were unavailable for comment.

Mah Sing's share price closed at RM1.71 on Bursa Malaysia yesterday.

The sources said the company was currently trading at an attractive valuation and the consortium was likely to enter into an equal partnership in buying a strategic stake in the developer.

The current controlling shareholder Datuk Seri Leong Hoy Kam, with 40 per cent stake, would continue to maintain a controlling stake in the firm and retain management control, they added.

Institutional investors such as Capital Group International Inc and Koperasi Permodalan Felda are other stakeholders with holdings of 9.7 and 8.6 per cent respectively in the company.

The deal would likely vary from the manner in which Middle East investors recently bought into construction firm, Putrajaya Perdana, and water works company Loh & Loh Corp Bhd.

In Putrajaya Perdana and Loh & Loh, the Middle East investors together with local investors took control of the companies by buying major stakes in both of them, triggering a general offer.

Mah Sing is an established developer with 14 projects spread across the Klang Valley, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor Baru.

It is one of the few local Malaysian developers who have received international awards such as the International Property Award 2007 in association with CNBC in London for its Damansara Legenda project in Petaling Jaya.

The latest investor interest in Mah Sing follows moves by investors from Abu Dhabi institutions such as Mubadala Development Company and Aldar, along with Kuwait Finance House and others to pour billions of ringgit to purchase land in the Iskandar Development Region in Johor and elsewhere.

Prominent individual investors from the Gulf and Malaysia also secured controlling stakes in companies such as Putrajaya Perdana and Loh and Loh, both companies with healthy cash piles and negligible debt, to enhance their bids for Malaysian, Abu Dhabi and Kuwait projects.

"With the potential tie-up of the consortium of investors in Mah Sing, the company's ability to grow further locally, regionally and in the Middle East is set to be very good," said the source.

Based on its closing price of RM1.71 yesterday, Mah Sing is currently traded at a prospective price earnings ratio of nine times and seven times for financial years 2008 and 2009 respectively, analysts said.

Mah Sing is traded at a deep 40 per cent discount to its revised net asset value of RM2.86 as estimated by Macquarie Research.

Deutsche Bank (target price of RM3.02), CIMB (target price of RM3.00), Aseambankers (target price of RM3.00) and SJ Securities (target price of RM3.15) have all placed a buy on Mah Sing stock.

The company has a dividend policy of 40 per cent of net profit as dividends for the 2007 financial year.

The group's market capitalisation has doubled to over RM1billion to date from RM511 million as at end 2006.

By New Straits Times

WCT wins RM185mil job

KUALA LUMPUR: WCT Engineering Bhd has bagged a RM185mil contract from AEON Co (M) Bhd to design, build, test and commission a three-storey shopping complex in Mukim Pulai, Johor.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia, WCT said the construction of the complex was expected to be completed by January 2009.

By Bernama

ACM 2007

ACM Expo & Forum - one of Asia's top tradeshow for the ICT & Media Industry will achieve a milestone in 2007 as its celebrates its 10th edition. It has brought together over 10,000 trade visitors and thousands of exhibitors which have resulted in over RM105 million worth of business deals and countless partnerships.

ACM 2007 Expo & Forum will be even more exciting as new technologies in the WORLD OF ICT come on stream. It's time you connect to Asia's leading INTERACTIVE platform for HIGH SPEED networking opportunities with thousands of decision makers and buyers across ASIA and the Middle East.

The exhibition is open to professionals, trade and business visitors only.
Admission is FREE.

Date: 20 -22 November 2007
Opening hours: 10.00am - 5.30pm ( 20 - 21 Nov )
10.00am - 4.00pm ( 22 Nov )

ACM 2007 Expo & Forum will be held at the ultra modern Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre located next to the Petronas Twin Towers at the heart of Kuala Lumpur City Centre. Facilities include fully equipped exhibition halls and meeting rooms. The venue has ample parking and is efficiently served by extensive public transportation systems. Designed as " City within a City ", the venue is located within walking distance to major hotels and food and entertainment outlets.

For detail information, please visit website