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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Singapore's Kwek in talks to sell KL land

The parcel of land in Jalan Bukit Bintang could fetch more than RM3,000 per sq ft, possibly a record price for a land deal in Malaysia's history.

Singapore's property tycoon Kwek Leng Beng is in talks to sell a parcel of land in Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur, which could possibly fetch a record price for a land deal in this country's history.

It is understood that the selling price for the land, owned by Kwek's City Developments Ltd (CDL), is being negotiated for more than RM3,000 per sq ft.

To date, the most expensive land deal reported has been Sunrise Bhd's acquisition of Wisma Angkasa Raya in Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur, for RM2,588 per sq ft. In May this year, FFM Bhd and Kuok Brothers Sdn Bhd sold a piece of land in Jalan Perak, Kuala Lumpur, for RM2,200 per sq ft.

CDL's land in Jalan Bukit Bintang is about 32,000 sq ft. At RM3,000 per sq ft, the deal could fetch RM96 million.

The land sits between the Grand Millennium Kuala Lumpur hotel and the Pavilion Kuala Lumpur shopping centre. CDL, which is part of Singapore's Hong Leong Group, also owns the Grand Millennium hotel.

Contenders for the land are believed to be the owner of Pavilion Kuala Lumpur and the YTL group, both of which have sizeable assets along Jalan Bukit Bintang.

Sources told Business Times that the RM500 million Millennium Residences project originally planned for the site and launched in 2007 had been aborted and that the land was being negotiated for sale.

A quick check at the site revealed that the project signage and hoarding had been removed. Some work on the 42-storey high-end condominium with an additional 15-storey crown started in 2008, but has since stalled.

In late March, a spokesperson for Singapore's Hong Leong said that the Millennium Residences would be launched later this year.

However, replying to a follow-up question from Business Times last week, the spokesperson said: "There are no details on the Millennium Residences available at this point."

When asked if the project had been scrapped and the land was being negotiated for sale, the spokesperson said: "We have no comment at this stage."

Pavilion Kuala Lumpur is wholly owned by Urusharta Cemerlang Sdn Bhd, which in turn is 51 per cent owned by Urusharta Cemerlang Development Sdn Bhd and 49 per cent by the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).

Pavilion Kuala Lumpur will be managing the new Fahrenheit 88 shopping centre, previously known as KL Plaza. It belongs to Makna Mujur Sdn Bhd, which is owned by Pavilion International Development Fund Ltd, of which the principal is the QIA.

YTL owns the Starhill Gallery and Lot 10 shopping centres and the JW Marriott hotel in the vicinity.

By Business Times

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