The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 20th September 2017

Singapore Economy

PM Lee, Premier Li reaffirm long-standing S’pore-China ties
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang reaffirmed the warm and long-standing friendship between Singapore and China at a meeting in Beijing on Tuesday at the start of Mr Lee’s three-day official visit to China, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said.  Mr Lee was given an official welcome ceremony and was hosted to a banquet by Premier Li at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People.

Ageing populations pose challenges but present business opportunities for Asia: Deloitte
An ageing population may be a concern and a challenge for many nations, but global professional services firm Deloitte says ageing populations will also generate a growth cluster of new business opportunities for this region – and Singapore, in particular.

Mobile, cashless payments will drive new economy
Mobile and cashless payments will be a mainstay of the new economy, says Stripe SEA head Piruze Sabuncu in a discussion at Slush Singapore, moderated by The Business Times’ Jacquelyn Cheok.  Ms Sabuncu shared her insights on how being mobile will enable businesses to go further, noting that how businesses take advantage of a mobile society is key.

Cashless payment trend ‘may profit banks’
The growing trend towards cashless payment systems could lift local bank profits by up to 9 per cent over the next two years, according to Maybank Kim Eng Research.  Analyst Ng Li Hiang said in a research report yesterday that the higher adoption of such payments would increase credit card use, which would potentially lift bank revenue. If 40 per cent to 70 per cent of expenditure here shifts from cash to cashless payments, bank profits could rise by 3 per cent to 9 per cent between this year and 2019, she said.

Singapore Real Estate

Buying a home? Compare building quality scores on BCA website
Home buyers in Singapore can now search for and compare the quality of workmanship of developers and their projects easily through the Building and Construction Authority’s (BCA) website. This will allow them to make a more informed choice on prospective purchases.  Launched on Tuesday, the new function called “Search for Quality Housing” allows users to search through a database which compiles the building quality scores of developers and contractors, and their properties.

Two more healing gardens open
Two more therapeutic gardens here aim not just to please the senses, but to soothe the soul as well.  The new National Parks Board (NParks) gardens in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio and Tiong Bahru parks are designed to provide respite and improve the mental well-being of visitors, including the elderly, through “therapeutic horticulture” programmes.

Property agents using presidential appeal to sell Yishun flats draw flak
Some property agents are trying to capitalise on the keen public interest in President Halimah Yacob’s decision to continue staying in her Yishun flat.  Their actions, however, have drawn flak from some industry players for being less-than-professional and “disrespectful”. In response, the agents maintained that they were simply tapping a “hot topic” to market the properties.

Companies’ Brief

Keppel Land buying prime site in Jakarta CBD for 586b rupiah
Keppel Land is buying a prime spot in Jakarta’s central business district, on which it intends to build a luxury apartment tower.  The property arm of Keppel Corporation, through its wholly owned subsidiary PT Sukses Manis Tangguh, has entered into a conditional sale-and-purchase agreement with Indonesia’s Bank Central Asia.

Ascott eyes nearly 4,700 units in Malaysia by 2023
With demand from corporate and leisure travellers for serviced residences growing in Malaysia, where the average occupancy of managed apartments is more than 70 per cent, The Ascott Limited plans to add an average of 500 units a year to its portfolio there over the next six years.  By 2023, the Singapore serviced residence operator’s Malaysia portfolio will increase to 4,692 units across 19 residences from about 1,700 units across eight properties at present, said its regional general manager for Singapore and Malaysia, Ervin Yeo, on Tuesday.

Perennial-Yanlord’s offer for United Engineers’ ordinary shares lapses
The takeover offer for United Engineers Limited (UEL) closed on Tuesday, but the offer for UEL’s ordinary shares has lapsed due to insufficient takers.  “As the minimum acceptance condition for the ordinary share as at the offer closing date needs to be more than 50 per cent, the ordinary share offer has not become unconditional and has lapsed,” Perennial said in an announcement.

Far East Hospitality eyes regional expansion amid mid-tier market boom
Homegrown Far East Hospitality (FEH) is stepping up its expansion plans as it looks to bring more properties in key cities in the region, including those in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia as well as Australia and New Zealand, into its fold.  In Singapore, it is in talks with developers to have another three to four more hotels under its management in the next three years.

CDL has its eye on a triple bottom line
For Singapore-listed developer City Developments Ltd (CDL), good corporate governance and sustainability are not just buzzwords or part of business ethics and responsibility, but they form the bedrock of doing business.  For more than two decades, sustainability has been integrated into CDL’s business and operations, says CDL’s chief sustainability officer Esther An.  Being a pioneer in green building and sustainability has its opportunities and challenges, Ms An recalls.

Full-year profits slide 28% at GL amid lower revenue in key hotel, gaming and property segments
Investment holding company GL, which has dealings in both hospitality and oil and gas, turned in a 28 per cent year-on-year slide in profits for the 12 months, it said on Friday (Aug 25).  Net profit was US$49 million (S$66.6 million), dropping from US$67.6 million the year before, while revenue fell 11 per cent to US$350.2 million.  The decline in turnover was due to lower revenue from hotel, gaming and property development segments.

ST Telemedia unit begins construction of sixth Singapore data centre
ST Telemedia Global Data Centres (STT GDC) has started construction of its sixth data centre in Singapore. The construction is expected to be completed in the second half of 2018.  This centre joins other new data centres that the company is setting up in Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and London as it rapidly expands capacity. STT GDC’s global portfolio comprises STT GDC Singapore, STT GDC India, GDS Services and Virtus Data Centres with over 50 data centres globally.

Toys ‘R’ Us files for bankruptcy protection in US
Toys “R” Us Inc has filed for bankruptcy protection in the United States, but its joint venture in Asia says it remains unscathed and in fact, looks to be in expansion mode.  In a statement on Tuesday, privately-held entity and member of Hong Kong’s Fung Group, Fung Retailing, said the stores under Toys “R” Us (Asia) are still open for business and “offering customers great service and a curated assortment of merchandise in the toy and baby categories”.

Views, Reviews & Forum

US Reits headed here can only be a good thing
It was certainly good news for the Singapore market when Keppel Capital, the asset management arm of Keppel Corporation, confirmed that it was working with American real estate investment firm KBS Realty to list Singapore’s second US real estate investment trust (Reit).  But the market reaction to this potential mainboard listing was mixed with sceptics wondering why a US company would want to cross the Pacific to list its assets here instead of in its home turf. The underlying perception seems to be that if a business or portfolio is promising, it will be well received back home and there is no need to woo overseas investors who are unfamiliar with the American market.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Unemployment is biggest risk for business: World Economic Forum survey

BOE’s Carney says UK rate hike looms in Brexit-hobbled economy

Britain’s young shoulder burden of housing crisis, while older reap profits: study

Billionaire Leong said to buy London building for £250m

China’s small and weak developers may be hurt by 250b yuan bond puts

China central bank backs mortgage rate hikes in capital

Japan commercial land prices rise for first time in 10 years -govt survey

Ford to tie up with India’s Mahindra, eyes access to huge market

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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