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Thursday, December 10, 2009

SP Setia eyeing more land in JB

JOHOR BARU: SP Setia Bhd is eyeing more land in the Johor Baru district for future development projects in view of the good long-term business prospect, said president and chief executive officer Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin.

To date, the company has 607ha left for development from four projects in Johor Baru, namely Bukit Indah and Setia Eco Gardens in the Nusajaya Corridor, Setia Indah in the Tebrau Growth Corridor and Setia Tropika in Kempas, according to Liew.

A Starbucks employee (left) showing Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin (right), Mohd Jaafar Awang (second from left) and Berjaya Starbucks Coffee Co Sdn Bhd executive director Datuk Francis Lee how he makes coffee at the opening of the drive-thru outlet at Setia Tropika.

“The remaining land here will keep us busy for the next three to five years and we are looking to add 607ha for future projects,’’ he said yesterday.

Liew said Johor’s contribution to SP Setia’s earnings was significant and for the financial year ended Oct 31, RM500mil of its RM1.6bil turnover came from Johor.

He was speaking at the official opening of the drive-thru Maybank and Starbucks Coffee outlet as well as the KFC and Pizza Hut outlets at Setia Tropika’s central business district (CBD) by Johor Baru Datuk Bandar Mohd Jaafar Awang.

Maybank offers the first-drive thru banking services in Johor and the second private banking here after its outfit at the Johor Baru City Square Office Tower and is connected to Malaysia’s first Starbucks drive-thru.

Liew said a three-star hotel by a local operator and serviced apartment blocks would be coming up in Setia Tropika’s CBD next year, occupying 0.40ha and 1.21ha respectively.

“We are going to sign the agreements with the respective parties in the first quarter of 2010 but at this point, I cannot give more details on the two projects,’’ he said.

Liew said the company did not plan to build a stand-alone shopping centre in any of its ongoing projects in Johor Baru as there were already too many shopping centres here.

He said it would instead focus on the niche markets such as drive-thru outlets, hotels and serviced apartments as demand for such products and services in Johor Baru was not fully tapped.

Liew said that for instance, Johor Baru could offer good hotel accommodation alternative for those attending seminars, conferences or business meetings in Singapore as the rates here were much lower.

He said the company would also be looking at Sabah and Sarawak and the contract to build a state-of-the-art transportation hub Aeropod @ Tanjung Aru in Kota Kinabalu would be a starting point.

By The Star (by Zazali Musa)

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