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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Menara Stanchart up for sale?

SINGAPORE's real estate investment arm plans to sell Menara Standard Chartered at Jalan Sultan Ismail here for about RM300 million, seven years after it bought the property, sources said.

The Government of Singapore Investment Corp Real Estate (GIC RE) is believed to have approached several local property agents for the possible sale.

"They are looking for a yield of about six per cent which works out to about RM950 per sq ft. They should not settle for any less than RM900 per sq ft for the building and in that location," a property agent said.

Based on a nett lettable area of 321,000 sq ft, the building could be sold for between RM289 million and RM305 million.

GIC RE vice-president for administration and corporate affairs, Greg Baptist, declined to comment when contacted.

According to GIC RE's website, it bought Menara Shahzan Insas through its affiliate Reco City Sdn Bhd in November 2001 for RM135 million.

Built in the mid-1980s, Menara Shahzan Insas is a 42-storey office tower with a total gross floor area of 46,700 sq m.

The building was later renamed Menara Standard Chartered in July 2004 after Standard Chartered Bank relocated its corporate headquarters there.

The website also said the building required extensive renovation due to its age and condition at the time of acquisition.

Once renovation was completed, GIC RE repositioned Menara Standard Chartered as a premium office building, attracting class A office rentals and international tenants like Standard Chartered Bank, California Fitness and Servcorp.

GIC RE is one of three business units under GIC, one of two of Singapore's investment arms. Temasek is the other arm that is more well known among investors. Together, they manage Singapore's foreign reserves.

GIC RE's website states that its current assets in Malaysia include holdings in the Sunway Pyramid Mall, Sunway Hotels and Resorts and a stake in the City Square shopping mall in Johor Baru.

By New Straits Times (by Vasantha Ganesan)

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