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Friday, July 9, 2010

Sunway REIT unfazed by weak debut

SHARES of Sunway real estate investment trust (REIT), Malaysia's biggest property trust, opened lower on their listing debut yesterday, but management remained unfazed by the stock market's recent weakness.

The stock opened at a 1 sen discount to its offer price of 90 sen and closed at the same price of 89 sen, although the market ended broadly higher.

Sunway REIT Management Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Datuk Jeffrey Ng said he was confident the REIT would perform well despite its disappointing start.

"Nearly half of our investors are foreign investors and we are heartened to see big corporations, both overseas and domestic, investing in us despite the volatile markets of the last two months," he told reporters at a press conference after its listing in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
The REIT also has cornerstone investors like Singapore's investment firm GIC, Great Eastern Life Assurance Malaysia Bhd, Employees Provident Fund and Permodalan Nasional Bhd.

Cornerstone investors usually join large initial public offerings IPOs and unlike institutional investors, they have a confirmed allocation.

Sunway REIT is Malaysia's largest REIT in corporate history and it is also the largest REIT IPO in Asia, excluding Japan, since 2007.

"We have started the ball rolling for other REITs and I believe they will also gain their momentum. Other new players who come in will have to match the qualities of the fundamentals and when they go out marketing," Ng said.

Sunway REIT is made up of eight Sunway City Bhd's properties in the retail and hospitality sector in Penang, Perak, Selangor and Kuala Lumpur, including the popular Sunway Pyramid shopping mall.

By Business Times

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