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Monday, May 5, 2008

IOI Properties in for steady flow of earnings

Plan for high-value projects in Malaysia and Singapore will ensure good earnings prospects for group

IOI Properties Bhd will be able to reap good earnings from several high-value commercial and residential projects in Puchong, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Singapore over the next two to three years.

The main board-listed company is also building up its property investment portfolio with the launch of the Puchong Financial Corporate Centre and the expansion of the IOI Mall in Puchong.

According to IOI Properties executive director Datuk Lee Yeow Chor, the company has set out to capitalise on the high value of its two townships, Bandar Puchong Jaya and Bandar Puteri Puchong, and has lined up a number of interesting commercial projects that will further spruce up these addresses.

Datuk Lee Yeow Chor

As Puchong still lacked Grade A office buildings, IOI Properties will be building the Puchong Financial Corporate Centre (PFCC) that will showcase five blocks of Grade A office buildings in Bandar Puteri Puchong.

Construction work for the first two blocks has started and is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2009. Work on the other three blocks will start early next year and the buildings will be ready by 2011.

“If the offer is right, we may consider selling one of the blocks in PFCC on an en bloc basis to a corporate or institutional buyer.

“IOI Properties will keep the remaining four blocks for long-term lease by corporations on condition that the space leased should be at least 25,000 to 40,000 sq ft,” Lee told StarBiz.

At an estimated rental rates of between RM3.80 and RM4.60 per sq ft for the office space and RM7 per sq ft for the retail space, total rental income expected from the first two blocks was some RM23mil, he said.

“These are futuristic and iconic office buildings that will elevate the office property landscape in Puchong. The project's location along the Damansara-Puchong Expressway gives the buildings very good frontage,” he added.

An artist's impression of IOI Boulevard in Pulau Bandar Puchong.

The ongoing extension of the IOI Mall costing RM70mil will add 300,000 sq ft of net lettable space to the existing 670,000-sq-ft mall.

He said the new wing, scheduled for completion by the end of this year, would raise the annual rental income from the shopping mall to RM50mil from RM37mil now.

New lifestyle hub

In the 930-acre Bandar Puchong Jaya, a new lifestyle business-cum-entertainment hub called IOI Boulevard will be built on the last piece of commercial land totalling six acres.

The RM330mil project will comprise 60 shop offices of five, six and eight storeys with average built-up areas of 11,050 to 17,680 sq ft.

The 60 retail lots on the ground floor will be priced from RM600 to RM650 per sq ft while the offices that are occupying the upper floors will be from RM300 to RMM350 per sq ft.

There are also eight corner blocks of eight storeys each offering space of 45,000 sq ft a block. They are priced around RM17mil each.

“The focal point of IOI Boulevard will be the glass canopy-covered centre courtyard called Fusion that will be a covered street with lush landscaping and water features, complete with alfresco sidewalk cafes,” Lee said.

Each of the shop offices will be equipped with a private lift.

On the residential property front, IOI Properties is moving into luxury condominium developments in Kuala Lumpur with its maiden project, The Verandas Condominiums in Jalan Ampang. Work will start by year-end, to be completed in two years.

The 16-storey condominium block on 3.8 acres will have 152 residences, including 10 penthouses. The intermediate units are from 2,200 to 2,700 sq ft while the penthouses will be from 3,300 to 4,200 sq ft.

“The residences will be designed in a single banked layout with all units having a direct view of the Kuala Lumpur City Centre. There will be large landscaped areas with multiple pools and an elevated clubhouse,” Lee said.

In Penang, IOI Properties' parent IOI Corp Bhd will be developing a four-acre site in Tanjong Tokong, Penang, into a 35-storey condominium block.

Fettes Residence will comprise 191 condominiums with average built-up of 1,800 to 2,000 sq ft that will be priced from RM380 per sq ft. There are also four penthouses of 4,000 sq ft. Most of the condominium units have sea views.

Lee said IOI Properties also had three ongoing township projects in Kulai and Segamat in Johor, and was planning to launch a 250-acre project in Kempas.

By The Star (by Angie Ng)

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