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Foreign firm to buy CityLife EC stake

THE buzz in the executive condominium (EC) market here has attracted another foreign player to dip its toes into Singapore’s property market.

Pan-Asian real estate investment company Everview Capital Partners will acquire a 5.5 per cent stake in EC project CityLife in Tampines for $4 million, said one of the EC’s developers SingXpress Land in a statement yesterday.

Everview, through a single purpose vehicle, has agreed to buy an 18.4 per cent stake in Catalist-listed SingXpress Land’s wholly owned unit SingXpress Property Development (SPDPL).

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The unit, in turn, holds a 30 per cent stake in CityLife, in Tampines Central 7. Kay Lim Realty holds another 30 per cent stake, while a wholly owned subsidiary of Amara Holdings holds the remaining 40 per cent.

Mr Chan Heng Fai, managing director of SingXpress Land, said the investment by Everview is in line with its objective to partner with global institutional investors.

“This investment agreement paves the way for future collaboration between Everview and SingXpress Land on real estate developments in Singapore,” he added.

The 514-unit CityLife, a private-public housing hybrid, was launched on Dec 29 last year and has seen strong interest, with more than 90 per cent of units sold.

The development is expected to be completed by 2016.

The agreement between both firms comes after a memorandum of understanding was inked between Everview and SingXpress Land on Aug 30 last year.

SPDPL has provided Everview a principal guarantee under which Everview can opt to exercise its right to have its investment amount returned, the statement added.

Everview was established last year and this acquisition marks its first foray into real estate development in Singapore.

Its target markets include China, Japan and some South-east Asian countries.

The firm has a Hong Kong-based management team and is capitalised by a major North American institutional investor.

Mr Wai Tang, managing director of Everview, said the firm is attracted to the EC segment as it targets middle-income Singaporeans seeking quality residences.

“We have faith in the project, the management quality and the integrity of the group,” he added.

ECs were created in 1995 to meet the aspirations of the so-called “sandwiched class”, who might not qualify for public housing but find private property beyond their reach.

(Source: The Straits Times)

 
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Posted by on January 24, 2013 in General

 

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Keen interest in Tampines EC penthouse.

Keen interest in Tampines EC penthouse.

SINGAPORE – The penthouse at an executive condominium (EC) in Tampines that sparked controversy over its lavish appointments seems to have attracted plenty of interest.

The 514-unit EC itself, City- Life @ Tampines, was more than three times subscribed with more than 1,700 applications received by the deadline yesterday.

Mr Jeffrey Hong, chief executive of marketing agent Global Property Strategic Alliance (GPS), noted that about 30 per cent of sales hotline inquiries it received were geared towards either the 4,342 sq ft penthouse or the six skysuites.

The skysuites are four- and five-bedroom units with a living or dining room that opens out to a wrap-around open terrace just below the penthouse floor.

National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan earlier said in a blog post that developers should remember the policy intent of ECs: to help Singaporean families earning $12,000 or less a month buy a condo for a price under the market rate.

His post came on the back of reports about a string of ECs sold at sky-high prices.

The developers, a consortium comprising Amara Holdings, Kay Lim Holdings and SingXpress Land, added that the dual-key and larger-sized units drew the most interest.

Amara Holdings chief executive Albert Teo noted that the response was “overwhelming” in the light of the project’s December launch, which is typically quieter due to it being the school holidays and festive period.

CityLife opens for booking on Dec 29.

Applications for The Topiary in Sengkang, a 700-unit EC, also closed this week.

Kheng Leong, who is developing the project in a joint venture with Qingjian, told The Straits Times that just over 600 applications were received during the five-day application period which closed on Tuesday. Sales start tomorrow.

The Topiary will have units ranging from 753 sq ft to 2,476 sq ft, with prices ranging from $580,000 for a two-bedroom unit to an expected minimum of $1.28 million for penthouses.

Experts said location is key to why an EC in a mature estate like Tampines attracts more interest than in Sengkang, which also has a larger supply of ECs in the pipeline.

OrangeTee head of research and consultancy Tan Kok Keong noted that CityLife also received a lot more hype and had fewer units.

But there is likely to be a saturation point for the EC market and the turning point could happen some time next year, he added.

“There have been a record number of new EC launches and the Government can consider putting more EC sites on the reserve list of the land sales programme for the first half of next year instead,” Mr Tan said.

One applicant, senior manager Alvin Leow, hopes to secure a three-bedroom unit at CityLife.

“I’m surprised at the response. I chose CityLife as it was in a mature estate and close to the MRT station and shopping malls,” he said.

“But it looks like my chances are slim now, since I’m also a second-time applicant.”

(Source: The Straits Times)

 
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Posted by on December 8, 2012 in General, Residential

 

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