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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sime's Oasis Square sees good take-up

Demand has been strong for Sime Darby Property Bhd's RM1 billion Oasis Square project, the central business district of the Ara Damansara township in Selangor.

It has three 12-storey corporate office towers; five blocks of 10- to 12-storey retail outlets and office suites, called The Capital; two 10-storey serviced apartments, named Oasis Serviced Suites; and double-storey food and beverage kiosks with 15 outlets.

Managing director Datuk Tunku Putra Badlishah Tunku Annuar said the project has recorded impressive take-up rates since the launch of phases 1, 2 and 3 last year.

All the 288 shop-offices in Blocks A and B under phase one of The Capital development are sold. The take-up for Blocks C and D under phase three is 86 per cent and 93 per cent respectively.

Block E, which has some 88 units, is targeted to be launched in the last quarter of this year.

"The need for office space in prime locations is evident from the swift take-up of the business units," Tunku Putra Badlishah said.

The serviced apartment blocks with 326 units are 99 per cent sold at between RM440 and RM503 per sq ft. They were snapped up less than a year after its launch in April and May last year.

The one-bedroom studios, two- and 2+1 bedroom units range between 572 sq ft and 1,108 sq ft.

Upcoming launches include the Oasis Corporate Park, a mixed commercial development comprising office towers, retail space, serviced apartments, a hotel and a convention centre which is still in the planning stage.

Key products in the 306ha Ara Damansara project, launched in 1999, include the 400 resort condominium units under Ara Hill, the Seri Pilmoor semi-detached houses and bungalows, and the Ara Damansara Linear City.

Sime Darby Property has sold some 3,123 mixed development units, including double-storey link-houses, double-story semi-detached houses, bungalows, low- to medium-cost apartments and high-end condominiums.

By Business Times

IJM Land to launch properties worth RM1bil

SUBANG: IJM Land Bhd expects to launch new properties with a total gross development value (GDV) of RM1bil to RM1.2bil in the financial year ending March 31 (FY11), said chief executive officer and managing director Datuk Soam Heng Choon.

“With the outlook of the property market looking more positive this year, we expect to launch a list of new properties during this financial year. Since April, we have already launched properties with a GDV of RM500mil.

“Next month, we expect to launch new residential properties with a combined GDV of RM120mil in Sandakan, the Klang Valley and Johor Baru,” he told reporters yesterday after the group’s AGM and EGM.

On the decision not to declare a final dividend to shareholders for FY10 and the payment of only a single-tier dividend of 2% on Aug 18, Soam said the group needed to continue propelling its property projects after chalking higher sales of RM1.6bil during that financial period.

“However, we will do our best to pay dividends although the group does not have the policy on that matter,” he said.

With the property market expected to be quite robust this year and banks still providing competitive interest rates, Soam believes the group’s property sales would continue to be as strong as seen in its first-quarter results, which are scheduled to be announced today.

On a possible hike in the real property gains tax (RPGT) to curb increasing speculative buying, Soam said whatever the decision, the Government needed to be firm on its policy.

“The Government needs to stand firm on its policy or else it would give a bad impression especially to investors,” he said.

Recently there has been speculation that the Government might impose an additional 5% for RPGT, thus decreasing the returns on property sales within the five-year period as it would be subjected to the higher exit gain tax.

By The Star

Allianz overweight on China property stocks

LONDON: Allianz has gone overweight Chinese property stocks, betting that higher sales volumes even at lower prices will boost profits at real estate companies.

China's real estate market has cooled in recent months under the weight of a package of government policies to rein in soaring prices, though latest figures show that prices have yet to fall significantly.

Curbs on mortgage lending and bank loans to developers, along with other steps to cool China's economy, have weighed on local stocks this year, while the Chinese property sub-index is down 23 per cent in 2010.

But Guido Stiel, who helps to manage ?3.5 billion (?1 = RM3.96) in emerging equities at Allianz, said he had initiated a position in the past month with China Overseas Land, the largest listed developer by market value.

His other picks are Shimao Property and Guangzhou .

"Analysts are focusing on the net asset value (NAV) and wanting to revise it down ... but the market has not reacted and didn't fall so we think it is reaching the bottom," Stiel said.

In the case of property firms, NAV reflects the market value of real estate properties held by the firm.

"The other point is that at the end of August, early September, there will be lots of new supply which should give developers the opportunity to bring down prices. It will be a volume game from now but they will make money on new sales."

"These companies are beta plays and their balance sheets are not so strong but if the volume game kicks in they will outperform," Stiel added.

Recent years' price surge has made buying a home out of reach for ordinary Chinese, so despite the clampdown on property speculation, the government also plans to build 5.8 million housing units for poorer citizens this year.

Analysts see this programme, estimated at up to 400 billion yuan, as a potential lifeline to developers.

Stiel said cooling the economy and markets is positive for China and ultimately for developers as well.

"That's why we remain positive," he said, adding that curbs on home loans would not be crippling as only 20 per cent of Chinese housebuyers rely heavily on mortgage borrowing.

Companies too are optimistic. Hong Kong-listed China Overseas for instance reported a 67 per cent jump in net income for the first half of 2010 and said it was confident of 20 per cent net income growth this year.

By Reuters

Axis-REIT proposes to buy Tesco JB complex for RM75.6mil

KUALA LUMPUR: Axis Real Estate Investment Trust (Axis-REIT) has proposed to acquire the Tesco JB hypermarket complex for a total lump-sum cash consideration of RM75.6mil from Bukit Indah (Johor) Sdn Bhd.

The latest acquisition would increase the assets under management to over RM1.2bil, Axis-REIT said in a filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday.

Axis-REIT trustee, OSK Trustees Bhd, has entered into a sale and purchase agreement with Bukit Indah Johor for the proposed acquisition.

The proposed acquisition will be funded with existing bank borrowings of Axis-REIT. Axis REIT Managers Bhd, the management company of Axis REIT, intends to utilise a debt facility of RM75.6mil from Axis-REIT’s existing credit lines.

The proposed debt financing will increase Axis-REIT’s gearing ratio to 39% of audited total assets as at Dec 31, 2009, which is below the gearing limit of 50% prescribed by the REIT guidelines.

Axis REIT Managers expects the proposed acquisition to contribute positively to the fund’s earnings for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2010.

The proposed acquisition is expected to be completed on or before Oct 31.

The Tesco JB hypermarket complex is located within the main commercial precinct of Setia EcoCity in Taman Bukit Indah, a comprehensive mixed development project.

By Bernama