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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

YNH appoints architects for building

PENANG: YNH Property Bhd has appointed Foster & Partners as architects for the group’s RM1.8bil Menara YNH in Kuala Lumpur's Golden Triangle.

“We made the appointment because our buyers for the project have indicated that they wanted an internationally-renowned architect for the building.

“The rationale is to add value to the project,” group corporate services head Daniel Chan told StarBiz.

Britain-based Foster & Partners, appointed last week, has high-profile projects in Germany, South Korea, Hong Kong, France and Malaysia.

The company designed the London headquarters of global insurance company Swiss-Re, Hongkong and Shanghai Bank's head office in Hong Kong, Hong Kong International Airport - touted as the world’s largest airport - and London’s third airport, Stansted.

It is currently designing Daewoo Electronics' headquarters in South Korea, and Vivaldi Tower in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Sir Norman Foster, the 1999 Laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, is chairman of Foster & Partners.

Chan said the iconic Menara YNH would have a luxurious retail podium equipped with energy-saving features. The 45-storey building will have more than 55,000 sq ft of built-up area per floor, and a total of 1.2 million sq ft of lettable space.

Early this year, the group announced an offer from Kuwait Finance House to buy 50% of Menara YNH for RM920mil.

Investors from Australia and Singapore are currently considering acquiring the remaining 50% of the project.

On the group’s project in Mont Kiara, Chan said YNH Property would launch the RM680mil D’Kiara Place, at the end of the second quarter.

The project, comprising serviced apartments, an office block and a retail centre, is located near Plaza Mont Kiara, a landmark business and commercial complex.

In a recent report, ECM Libra Investment Bank said YNH Property has one of the highest unbilled sales in the country.

It said with half of Menara YNH for RM920mil, YNH's unbilled sales of RM1.2bil was one of the largest in the country, more than four times its 2007 revenue of RM290mil.

This means that the group has locked in 40% to 50% of its earnings before interest and tax for financial years 2008 and 2009.

By The Star (by David Tan)

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