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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Pavilion to expand to full capacity

Kuala Lumpur: Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, which is expected to be the key asset of a planned real estate investment trust that is heading for a listing, will be extended.

The mall, owned by Urusharta Cemerlang Sdn Bhd, now has a total built-up area of 3.68 million sq ft.

Urusharta Cemerlang is 51 per cent-owned by Urusharta Cemerlang Development Sdn Bhd and 49 per cent by Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).

Urusharta Cemerlang chairman Tan Sri Zainol Mahmoodf, when approached by Business Times to ask what the plans were for the land next door that was acquired, said: "We will be expanding the mall to its full capacity".

Last year, Urusharta Cemerlang (KL) Sdn Bhd bought the 29,127 sq ft land for RM210 million from Millennium & Copthorne plc. The deal at RM7,209.80 per sq ft made history as Malaysia's "most expensive per sq ft" deal.

Zainol, who was named as Urusharta Cemerlang KL shareholder, added that an announcement on the plan will be made soon. He declined to elaborate.

Kuala Lumpur Pavilion Sdn Bhd deputy chairman, Datin Cindy Lim, when asked if the planned listing of the REIT will take place this quarter or the final quarter of 2011, merely said: "It will be soon".

Kuala Lumpur Pavilion manages Pavilion KL.

A search showed that a company by the name of Pavilion Reit Management Sdn Bhd had been set up, and that Lim and her husband, Datuk Desmond Lim, were the shareholders.

In May this year, Business Times reported that there were plans to list Pavilion Kuala Lumpur with a possible asset size of between RM4 billion and RM5 billion. An office building may be included to form part of the REIT.

Zainol and Lim yesterday attended the launch of the latest precinct within the mall called Tokyo Street.

Tokyo Street, located on the sixth level of the shopping complex, has a total net lettable area of 27,100 sq ft. There are some 41 tenants of which 70 per cent were making their debut.

Joyce Yap, Kuala Lumpur Pavilion chief executive officer for retail, said the new precinct is aiming for sales of RM48 million within the first year of operation.

Tenants of the mall made some RM1.7 billion in the financial year ended December 31 2010 and now welcomes three million shoppers and targets to raise it to 3.5 million patrons.

According to Yap, the landlords and tenants have pumped in RM7 million and RM9 million, respectively, to create Tokyo Street.

She expects the retailers to see return on investment within the next two to three years.

Meanwhile, Japanese ambassador to Malaysia Shigeru Nakamura said the products are comparable in quality to those in found Japan and are reasonably priced.

Nakamura added that while there are many places around the world particularly in the US where there are Japanese retailers, he has not seen as many Japanese retailers in one place outside of Japan.

By Business Times

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