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Friday, August 7, 2009

SunCity may revive REIT plan

Property group Sunway City Bhd (SunCity) may revive a US$860 million (RM3 billion) plan to float its property assets through a real estate investment trust (REIT) next year depending on the recovery in markets, a top executive said.

"We will certainly go forward with the REIT. The only question is the right timing," said Ngeow Voon Yean, managing director for property investment at SunCity.

The move was stalled earlier this year as markets tumbled amid the global financial crisis.

The listing plan will see SunCity, the country's sixth largest developer with a market value of US$455 million (RM1.6 billion), injecting its retail property assets such as shopping malls, hotels and theme parks into an investment trust.
"These few months will be a good signal to see where we are heading, but frankly, whatever we are looking at will be next year," Ngeow said in an interview.

Malaysia's recent move to ease listing rules and a recovery in Asia's initial public offering market augur well for the listing.

Ngeow, however, said the company was unlikely to bring back the plan until it could see a convincing recovery in foreign interest for local real estate.

"This would be one of the largest REIT exercises in Malaysia. So we would need foreign interest to take up some of the units. Once the foreign appetite for our real estate sector comes back, then we will come in," he said.

Starhill Global Real Estate Investment Trust, controlled by YTL Corp Bhd said in June that it planned to raise about S$337 million (RM822 million) to cut debt and get new funds for possible acquisitions.

The listing of SunCity's investment properties is part of its broader strategy to grow its overseas operations.

By Reuters

Tempo Prop sees more bookings

PETALING JAYA: Tempo Properties Sdn Bhd expects another 30% of the second phase of its The Atmosphere commercial development in Seri Kembangan to be taken up by this weekend.

The 20-acre phase comprises five components and encompasses shop offices, designer small office/home office (SOHO) suites, boulevard shops and retail outlets.

»We are optimistic that our pricing strategy, the project design and the incentives we are providing will appeal to buyers« KHOO BOO HIAN

Chief executive officer Khoo Boo Hian said type A, comprising 30 units of three- and four-storey shops, was already sold out following a series of previews. It will be launching 106 more units under types B, C and D tomorrow.

“We are optimistic that our pricing strategy, the project design and the incentives we are providing will appeal to buyers,” he told StarBiz in a telephone interview yesterday.

The second phase was targeted at investors and business people, he said, adding that the units were priced from RM860,000.

“We will be covering the (loan) interest during construction. We will also be providing a 6% rental guarantee for the third and fourth floors for a year for type-D units. This is so that the owners can take their time to look for tenants.”

Types B to D comprise four- and five-storey units.

Khoo also said The Atmosphere was being developed in a “fast growing area”.

“The area is fairly developed. There is already a Jusco (supermarket cum department store) there, with Giant and Tesco (hypermarkets) also coming up. The Atmosphere is being developed in what we like to call the heart of the golden triangle of southern Klang Valley.

“We see great potential for growth,” he said.

The commercial development is accessible via major highways such as Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong Expressway, South Klang Valley Expressway, Maju Expressway and the North-South Highway.

The Atmosphere, with a gross development value (GDV) of about RM900mil and comprising three phases, is located on over 40 acres that are being jointly developed by Tempo Properties and main market-listed Eksons Corp Bhd.

Khoo said the first phase was sold for RM23mil for the development of the Giant hypermarket.

Phase 2 has a GDV of RM300mil. The third phase, with a GDV of up to RM600mil, is expected to be launched within two years, said Khoo.

“Development of The Atmosphere is expected to be completed by early 2014,” he said.

By The Star (by Eugene Mahalingam)

Eksons expects RM1b GDV for maiden property project

The second phase of the mixed development project dubbed 'The Atmosphere' will be launched on Saturday

Export-Oriented plywood producer Eksons Corp Bhd expects its maiden property project in Seri Kembangan, Selangor, to be close to RM1 billion in gross development value (GDV) over five years.

Eksons, listed on Bursa Malaysia's main market and records about RM300 million revenue per year, owns 60 per cent of the mixed development project dubbed "The Atmosphere".

Tempo Properties Sdn Bhd, a Seremban-based boutique property developer, holds the remaining 40 per cent of the project sprawling some 20.23ha, its location considered as "the heart of the Golden Triangle of southern Klang Valley".

"We are scouting for more (property) projects with Tempo," Eksons director Tang Seng Fatt told a news briefing yesterday on The Atmosphere's second phase that will be launched on Saturday.
Eksons specialises in the manufacturing of tropical thin plywood and operates two factories in Sibu and Tawau, with a combined capacity of 285,000 tonnes per year.

Over 90 per cent of the company's output is exported mainly to the US, the Middle East, North America, North Africa, Taiwan and South Korea.

Tempo, meanwhile, has been involved in property development for more than 10 years. Its projects include Taman Cengal Utama, Taman Prima Tropika and Medan Suria in the Klang Valley.

Tempo chief executive officer Khoo Boo Hian said the second phase of The Atmosphere is expected to generate a GDV of RM300 million and will be ready in two years.

Its third phase, due to kick off in 2011 or 2012, is expected to churn out RM600 million in GDV.

Eksons and Tempo Properties have secured RM23.5 million from the sale of its first phase covering 3.64ha that will entirely be occupied by the Giant hypermarket.

The Atmosphere is marketed as the premier lifestyle commercial development.

"It will be a hub for culture, nature, lifestyle and community for people from different walks of life," Khoo said.

Phase Two is divided into five themed segments with a total of 136 units of shopoffice, designer SOHO (small office home office) suites, boulevard shops and retail outlets.

The units are priced from RM860,000 onwards.

By Business Times (by Zuraimi Abdullah)

Hap Seng buys stake in Menara Citibank

Hap Seng Consolidated Bhd today signed an agreement with CapitaLand Ltd and Amsteel Corp Bhd to acquire their entire shareholding in Inverfin Sdn Bhd.

The acquired shares represent a 50 per cent stake in Inverfin, which in turn owns Menara Citibank, a 50-storey office building in the Kuala Lumpur City Centre.

Hap Seng's group managing director Datuk Edward Lee Ming Foo said the acquisition will be funded by new bank borrowings and internally generated funds.

The group has proposed to obtain bank borrowings for up to RM200 million to finance the proposed acquisition, he said in a statement today.

The acquisition consideration of the Inverfin shares from CapitaLand and Amsteel is based on 50 percent of the net asset value of Inverfin as at June 30, 2009, taking into consideration the agreed property value of Menara which is fixed at RM607,448,952.

With the acquisition, the gearing ratio of Hap Seng is expected to increase marginally from 1.06 to 1.14 based on its audited accounts as at Dec 31, 2008.

According to Lee, the demand for prestigious office space in the heart of the Golden Triangle has not waned despite the global economic downturn.

"Based on our experience in the market, we expect demand to remain robust, if not improve, while supply is naturally kept limited in super-prime areas such as these," he said.

Menara Citibank sits on a parcel of freehold land measuring 12,700 square metres and has a net rentable area of 68,000 square metres.

"The unique propositions of Menara Citibank offer both the potential for rental growth as well as capital appreciation," Lee said.

"This will bode well for our group in terms of sustained recurring income and long-term value for our property holding and development division," he said.

By Bernama

YTL Land package to help spur sales of Centrio

KUALA LUMPUR: YTL Land & Development Bhd hopes to sell the remaining units of its latest property development, Centrio, when a new financial package is offered from this weekend.

The package is launched in conjunction with the opening of small office/home office (SOHO) show units to the public.

Sales and marketing senior manager Jessica Loo said the financial package, which would be available for two weeks, would give up to RM150,000 rebates to purchasers of the available units at Centrio.

“About 75% of the units at Centrio have been taken up. We hope this special package will help boost sales for the remaining units,” she said at a media briefing yesterday.

The Centrio project that started in December 2006 comprises 306 units of SOHOs, office suites, boutique garden offices and retail stores on 3.8 acres in Bukit Kerinchi.

It is YTL Land’s latest development on the 90 acres it owns in Bukit Kerinchi after launching Pantai Hillpark and Andalucia residential units.

With a gross development value of RM100mil, Centrio is being developed by YTL Land unit Syarikat Kemajuan Perumahan Negara Sdn Bhd.

“We do have plans to launch another new development in this area, maybe next year, to build semi-detached and bungalow units,” Loo said, adding that Centrio was expected to be completed in the first quarter next year.

She said there were eight designs for the SOHO units that ranged from 623 to 1,536 sq ft and priced between RM550 and RM600 per sq ft.

The office units are priced from RM450 to RM550 per sq ft.

As for retail stores, Loo said all the units were only for rental because YTL Land wanted better control over the tenants.

Located on the immediate south of Bangsar, Centrio is accessible through the Federal Highway, Sprint Duta-Kerinchi Link and New Pantai Expressway.

By The Star

Bina Puri secures RM51m building job

Bina Puri Holdings Bhd, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Bina Puri Construction Sdn Bhd, has won a RM50.9 million contract from Rakyat Elite Sdn Bhd to build the foundation and substructure of a 13-story building.

With the award to build the Plaza Merdeka Commercial Complex/Hotel in Kuching, Sarawak, the company’s order book stands at RM2.35 billion, it said in a statement.

The group has managed to secure new projects of up to RM 1.1 billion so far in 2009 and is continuously bidding for new project, both locally and internationally, Bina Puri added.

At 9.16am in Kuala Lumpur trading, the company's stock gained 8.5 per cent to 89.5 sen, headed for the largest advance since May 25.

By Business Times