Construction sector unveils plan to modernise
The construction industry aims to more than double the pool of professionals in digital technology, pre-fabrication and green-building capabilities from the current 32,000 to 80,000 by 2025. The sector’s Industry Transformation Map (ITM), which was launched on Tuesday, will train its sights on ramping up the use of digital technology by the various parties involved in the life cycle of a building – from its architects and consultants through to its contractors and facility managers.
Six clean-energy investments to trigger S$500m in business spending
Six clean-energy investments secured recently in Singapore will create 400 professional-level jobs and result in S$500 million in cumulative business spending over the next five years. These investments – in the fields of solar, micro-grids, energy storage and digital technologies – point to Singapore remaining a choice location for companies to innovate and commercialise technologies, said Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Koh Poh Koon on Tuesday.
World travel body expects S’pore tourism revenue to hit US$18b by 2027
Spending on travel and tourism in Singapore over the past decade has grown at an average rate of 7.3 per cent to double to US$12.4 billion in 2016 – and the figure is poised to rally further in the next 10 years if the government succeeds in getting visitors to part with their money. The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), in a report examining the contribution of travel and tourism to city economies and job creation, predicts that it will happen – Singapore’s revenues from tourism will grow by 3 per cent a year from 2017 to 2027 to US$18.1 billion by 2027 – that is, by 46 per cent in a decade.
SINGAPORE REAL ESTATE
Tech can boost construction sector’s appeal, say observers
Structural engineer Colin Yip moved to the Amsterdam office of his employer, engineering consultancy Arup, in 2011. He was shocked to discover how high-tech his field could be. For example, his team would carry out complex engineering calculations not manually, but by writing computer programs.
Tender process for consultants to be tweaked
Tenders for consulting work on public infrastructure projects will be adjusted to prevent aggressively low bids which then fail to deliver results. National Development Minister Lawrence Wong revealed this at an Institution of Engineers Singapore (IES) dinner last night, when he highlighted how there have been recent cases of “fee diving” – in which consultants make “very low and unrealistic bids” to secure a contract.
Cairnhill Mansions, adjacent site up for sale in separate tenders
The en bloc sale train is steaming ahead with new developments being put up for tender, firm progress in projects seeking approval from owners, and more projects kick-starting the collective sale process. Cairnhill Mansions in prime district 9 was launched on Tuesday for collective sale through a public tender with a guide price of S$362 million. An adjacent freehold site that hosts one house owned by an individual is also launched in a separate tender with a guide price of S$115 million.
Raffles looks to suite life as part of revamp
Singapore’s Grand Dame, The Raffles Hotel, will introduce more suites and additional suite categories as it aims to attract a new segment of travellers. The iconic hotel, which is currently undergoing restoration, will see the total number of suites go up from 103 to 115 when it re-opens in the second half of 2018. This is thanks to the reconfiguration of existing suites as well as freed-up space from boardrooms being converted into rooms.
MIT, Mapletree in JV to acquire 14 US data centres for US$750m
In a bid to gain a foothold in the world’s largest data centre market, Mapletree Industrial Trust (MIT) has teamed up with its sponsor Mapletree Investment to acquire a portfolio of 14 data centres in the US for US$750 million.
Ascott Reit’s DPU falls in Q3
Ascott Residence Trust’s (Ascott Reit) distribution per unit (DPU) for the third quarter fell 28 per cent year on year to 1.69 Singapore cents, due in part to an enlarged unit base from a rights issue which took place earlier this year. If not for the rights issue, DPU would have actually declined by 26 per cent from 2.28 cents a year ago.
Far East Orchard unit to manage 3 new Sentosa hotels
Far East Orchard (FEO), formerly known as Orchard Parade Holdings and part of the Far East Organization, announced on Tuesday that its indirect subsidiary, Far East Hospitality Management (S) Pte Ltd (FEHMS), will soon be operating and managing three new hotels in Sentosa.
First Sponsor posts 13.9% surge in Q3 profit
Robust sales from developer First Sponsor’s projects in Chengdu and Dongguan in China, and higher contribution from the higher-yielding property financing business raised net profit for the third quarter by 13.9 per cent to S$22.02 million from the year-ago period, the group said in a Singapore Exchange filing on Wednesday morning.
Keppel Logistics’ new brand taps e-commerce market
To tap the fast-growing spheres of e-commerce and urban logistics in the region, Keppel Logistics has rolled out an integrated brand to widen the company’s reach and better serve businesses and consumers. Called UrbanFox, the multi-channel logistics and sales marketing solutions brand offers a full suite of services from e-commerce channel management – which refers to marketing and sales strategies developed to reach the widest possible customer base, warehousing and inventory – to last-mile fulfilment or the movement of goods to the final destination.
Frasers Centrepoint Trust’s Q4 DPU up 5.5%
Frasers Centrepoint Trust (FCT) posted on Wednesday a 5.5 per cent rise in its distribution per unit (DPU) for the fourth quarter, as higher rental income and improved occupancy at Northpoint City contributed to growth. For the three months ended Sept 30, 2017, DPU stood at 2.97 Singapore cents, up from 2.815 cents the year before. Full-year DPU was 11.9 cents, up from 11.764 cents a year ago, making it the highest DPU achieved since FCT’s listing in 2006.
Mapletree Industrial sets placement at price talk’s S$1.90 rich end, upsizes to S$155.7m
Mapletree Industrial Trust has priced an upsized S$155.7 million placement of units at S$1.90 apiece to cover the rich end of price talk. The real estate investment trust (Reit) had planned to issue at least S$125 million of units between S$1.83 and S$1.90 per unit, with an over-allotment option of at least S$25 million. Bookrunner and underwriter DBS Bank received interest that was 3.3 times the shares available.
Lum Chang bags S$85.7m construction contract from own JV
A subsidiary of property and construction group Lum Chang Holdings has been awarded a contract for building works at 2 Serangoon Road, formerly known as The Verge. The contract, awarded to Lum Chang Building Contractors Pte Ltd, is valued at S$85.7 million with the target completion expected to be in the second half of 2019.
Cache Logistics Trust’s DPU down 12.8% in Q3
Warehouse owner Cache Logistics Trust reported a distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.54 cents for the third quarter ended Sept 30, 2017, down 12.8 per cent from 1.77 cents a year ago. The DPU this quarter was affected by its rights issue which was recently completed on Oct 9, where 162.57 million new units were launched to raise gross proceeds of approximately S$102.7 million.
Keppel Logistics launches new brand to provide full suite of services
Keppel Logistics, a subsidiary of mainboard-listed Keppel Telecommunications and Transportation (Keppel T&T), on Tuesday rolled out an integrated logistics brand to better serve businesses and consumers, as it moves to tap fast-growing spheres of e-commerce and urban logistics. The new arm called UrbanFox is a multi-channel logistics and sales marketing solutions brand that has a full suite of capabilities comprising e-commerce channel management, warehousing and inventory, as well as last-mile fulfilment.
VIEWS, REVIEWS & FORUM
No faster homes for now, but a future-proof industry
Singaporeans hoping that the new road map to transform the construction industry would lead to lower home prices or shorter construction periods may have to wait a while to reap those dividends. Though observers say that home owners and buyers will eventually see some tangible benefits, the ambitious Industry Transformation Map (ITM) unveiled yesterday is focused first on ensuring the sustainability of the worst-performing sector in Singapore, which was forecast to grow just 0.3 per cent this year.
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