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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Germany's UIRE eyes more KL properties

KUALA LUMPUR: Germany's Union Investment Real Estate GmbH (UIRE) has plans to buy a few more office buildings valued between RM200 and RM400 million here in the next two to three years.

UIRE Asia Pacific Pte Ltd managing director Ulrich Dischler, however, said the investment firm has yet to begin talks with any local parties.

"We take our time looking for opportunities within the RM200 million to RM400 million range and our focus will be in Kuala Lumpur for now," he told reporters after the handover ceremony of the CapSquare Tower from Bandar Raya Developments Bhd (BDRB) to UIRE here yesterday.

The CapSquare Tower, an office block with 41 floors and 600,000 sq ft of net lettable space, was purchased by UIRE in 2008 for RM440 million.

UIRE is an investment management company specialising in open-ended real estate funds for private and institutional investors with assets under management amounting to ?13.8 billion (RM59.2 billion).

"We are in 26 countries with real estate funds of some 150 properties," said Dischler, adding that CapSquare is its first property in Malaysia.

In Asia, UIRE is also in Singapore, South Korea and Japan.

The handover ceremony yesterday was witnessed by Kuala Lumpur mayor Tan Sri Ahmad Fuad Ismail.

Also present was BDRB chief executive officer Datuk Jagan Sabapathy and the German ambassador to Malaysia Dr Guenther Gruber.

In his speech, Sabapathy noted that UIRE's investment in Kuala Lumpur's real estate market is a demonstration of its confidence in Malaysia's economy.

"Indeed, despite the Lehman Brothers-led banking crisis in the US and Europe in 2009 that had a significant knock-on effect on global real estate, UIRE stood by and completed this purchase," he said.

He added that BDRB is keen to further develop its relationship with UIRE in the future.

CapSquare Tower is part of the overall CapSquare development covering some 6ha of land and home to Menara Multi-Purpose, two residential towers, Unitar city campus and CapSquare retail which in September will add several new tenants like Apple, Dell, a supermarket and Tanjung's TGV.

By Business Times

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