Archive | Archive – world property

World property W15Oct14 – Mirvac buys Birkenhead Pt, NAB adds UK asset manager, Scotland replaces stamp duty, Sovereign funds trade in London

Mirvac buys Birkenhead Point
NAB buys into UK manager Orchard Street
Scotland replaces stamp duty
Norges Bank buys $1.2 billion London building from GIC

Mirvac buys Birkenhead Point

Birkenhead Point, Sydney.

Birkenhead Point, Sydney.

Mirvac Group has entered into an agreement to acquire the Birkenhead Point Shopping Centre at Drummoyne, 5km from the Sydney cbd, including the adjoining carparking facility & marina, for $A310 million.

CDL Hotels NZ Ltd (now Millennium & Copthorne Hotels NZ Ltd) sold Birkenhead Point to Intro International Ltd (Denis Jen) in 2004 for $120 million. It had been an asset of Kingsgate International Corp Ltd, controlled by CDL & Tai Tak Securities Pte Ltd.

Abacus Property Group & the Kirsh Group bought it in 2010 for $A174 million and upgraded the retail offer into a convenience-based shopping centre & fashion outlet centre. The 187-berth marina was in the final upgrade stages.

Mirvac said its purchase, expected to be completed in November, represented a fully let passing yield of 6.6%.

The 3.7ha waterfront site has a gross lettable area of 33,100m² and parking for 1395 cars. Moving annual turnover is $A228.5 million at $A8082/m².

Link: Mirvac Group

NAB buys into UK manager Orchard Street

National Australia Bank’s global asset management business, NAB Asset Management, has bought a majority stake in UK specialist commercial property investment manager Orchard Street Investment Management LLP from the existing partners.

The bank has 12 other global asset managers operating in all major asset classes, managing $A178 billion in 50 investment strategies.

Orchard Street has grown its assets under management from £800 million to £4 billion in 10 years.

Scotland replaces stamp duty

A new land & buildings transaction tax will replace stamp duty in Scotland next April, and Property Wire editor Ray Clancy said at the weekend he expects this to herald change in the rest of the UK.

The starting threshold is £135,000, up from the stamp duty threshold of £125,000. A marginal tax of 2% will apply to the proportion of a transaction between £135-250,000, a 10% rate will apply between £250,001-1 million and there will be a new 12% tax on properties costing more than £1 million.

The Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment & Sustainable Growth, John Swinney, announced the rates & bands for the tax last Thursday, as part of the draft budget for 2015-16. The proposed rates & bands are subject to parliamentary approval.

It’s the first tax created by a Scottish parliament in 300 years.

Links: Scottish Government, land & buildings transaction tax
Property Wire, Property tax set for major change in the UK

Norges Bank buys $1.2 billion London building from GIC

The Bank of America Merrill Lynch Financial Centre, London.

The Bank of America Merrill Lynch Financial Centre, London.

Norway’s state-owned investment fund based on oil royalties, Norges Bank Investment Management, bought a 54,350m² London office complex (at left, aerial shot above) for £582.5 million ($NZ1.182 billion) cash last week from the Singapore Government’s sovereign wealth fund, GIC.

GIC bought the property from Merrill Lynch & Co Inc in 2007 for £480 million.

The property, the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Financial Centre at 2 King Edward St, is a freehold office campus consisting of 4 independent office buildings occupying a 1.3ha site. It’s fully leased to Bank of America Merrill Lynch, which will continue to manage it.

The Norwegian fund also bought a 50% interest in a 42,000m² Dutch logistics property last week, through its joint venture with US company Prologis.

Norges paid €12.4 million, again with no debt financing, for the building in Born.

Link: Norges Bank Investment Management

Attribution: Mirvac, Abacus, NAB, Orchard St, Scottish Government, Norges Bank

Regular leads: Europe Real Estate, Mingtiandi, Planetizen, World Property Channel

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Snapshot on world property, week to 27 November 2011

Contents:

 

Centro survives

Latest from RICS internationally

 

23 November 2011:

 

Centro survives

Centro Property Group got the overwhelming votes it needed yesterday from lenders & convertible bondholders to stay in business. The lenders voted 100% in favour after 28% abstained, and the bondholders were just under 100% in favour of the scheme of arrangement which will see securityholders – 26,000 mostly small; investors with an average holding of around 37,000 securities – get A5.03c/security.

They stood to get nothing if the scheme wasn’t approved and the 2 Centro entities, Centro Property Trust & Centro Properties Ltd, were forced into receivership. The outcome is that all the assets will go to the renamed Centro Properties – Central Retail Australia – which will be owned by its secured lenders in exchange for the cancellation of debt.

The scheme still needs the approval of the NSW Supreme Court, which Centro’s former auditor, PricewaterhouseCoopers, said on Monday it would challenge.

The group was one of the major Australian property casualties of the global financial crisis and has been struggling to stay alive since the end of 2007. It sold its US assets in February for $US9.4 billion but was still not going to be able to meet its debt obligations.

It had negative equity of $A1.3 billion at 30 June this year and $A2.9 billion of debt maturing on 15 December – now cancelled, if the scheme gets court approval.

The scheme was faltering until late last week, when $A90 million of debt was found to offer to shareholders, winning over the largest external shareholder, Marathon Asset Management.

The new-look listed property trust will own 43 Australian shopping centres worth $A4.4 billion. Combining that with its syndicate business, the group will have assets of $A7 billion.

 

Latest from RICS internationally

The RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) global real estate weekly updates, which I was having trouble connecting to initially, can be reached from this link: RICS, grew.

Want to comment? Go to the forum.

 

Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 6 November 2011

Contents:

 

RICS weekly update at foot of page

Simon files case against home state for not collecting net sales tax

Goodman wins China award, has 5 new Chin projects underway

Goodman European Logistics Fund launches rights issue, group starts 3 new European projects

New Woolworths chief ponders property float, Dick Smith options, multi-channel retailing

Valad resumes growth under Blackstone ownership

RICS weekly update

 

6 November 2011:

 

The Snapshot on world property is, I think, a more effective way of letting you know about many overseas property events, succinctly, rather than trying to put a handful of them into “proper” story format… and losing the lot because I don’t have time to do that.

It’s been in abeyance since February 2004, along with most of the other Snapshots, when numerous changes were made to The Bob Dey Property Report.

 

RICS weekly update at foot of page

 

Introduced this week, at the foot of the page, is the weekly update on world property news from RICS (the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors; New Zealand fits into the Oceania branch of it).

 

Simon files case against home state for not collecting net sales tax

 

Simon Property Group Inc took up the battle of bricks-&-mortar retailers against internet sales on Thursday by filing a complaint against its home state of Indiana for not collecting sales tax from Amazon on sales made within the state.

Simon, biggest retail real estate owner, developer & manager in the US, filed its complaint against the state in the Marion County Circuit Court. The company said it wasn’t seeking monetary damages, but “to benefit all of Indiana’s taxpayers and the state’s bricks-&-mortar retailers, many of which are Simon’s tenants at its 27 shopping centres in Indiana….

“Amazon.com is required by Indiana law to collect & remit sales & use taxes to the state, for sales made over the internet, but has consistently refused to do so even though it is required by current Indiana laws.”

 

Goodman wins China award, has 5 new Chin projects underway

Goodman Group was awarded the Westpac business excellence award for large companies at the end of October for its performance in greater China. The company entered the China market in 2005 and has $US2 billion invested in the region.

It’s become one of the largest industrial landlords in Hong Kong, with a portfolio of about 900,000m² with a value of $US1.3 billion. Its latest development project, Interlink, is due for completion in January and is the largest industrial development in Hong Kong for over 10 years, offering 223,000m². It’s also the first building of its type to be awarded both a LEED certification and the HK BEAM Gold standard certification. In mainland China, Goodman owns & manages a portfolio of 7 warehouse & distribution facilities, with a combined value of $US215 million. Over the last 12 months, Goodman has also started 5 new development projects with a total estimated completion value of $US255 million. Goodman has a 2 million ft² (186,000m²) China land bank capable of delivering 1 million ft² of prime warehousing space.

Goodman European Logistics Fund launches rights issue, group starts 3 new European projects

The Goodman European Logistics Fund launched a €400 million underwritten rights issue last week and an €800 million debt refinance package, ensuring the fund maintains its gearing below 40%. It will refinance €400 million of secured facilities and have a €400 million unsecured facility structured to allow the fund to transition to debt capital markets to diversify its long-term funding sources. Goodman Group chief executive & fund investment committee chairman Greg Goodman said the refinancing would also provide about €500 million of investment capability, giving the fund capacity to increase gross assets to €2 billion and improving financial flexibility. The fund is continental Europe’s largest unlisted logistics fund, with €1.6 billion of logistics assets under management and a weighted average lease term of about 5 years. In the last 3 weeks, Goodman has announced planning consent for a 12,000m² facility at its Thurrock commercial park in Essex for A&N Media, which will invest £50 million in the new plant; a 78,000m² logistics centre for e-commerce retailer Zalando at the Erfurt freight terminal in the centre of Germany, pre-leased on a 16-year term; and a 45,000m² design-build facility in Hanover for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles – Goodman’s ninth German development this year.

Link: Goodman

New Woolworths chief ponders property float, Dick Smith options, multi-channel retailing

Woolworths Ltd’s new chief executive, Grant O’Brien, mentioned a float of the group’s multi-billion-dollar property portfolio in a wide-ranging investor briefing in Sydney on Wednesday.

The property float wasn’t mentioned in company releases and didn’t extend to more than 2 paragraphs in news stories from the briefing. Mr O’Brien raised it alongside a strategic review of the Dick Smith consumer electronics business, Woolworths’ intention to become Australia’s leading multi‐channel retailer and the opening of 61 new stores this year (a net 44 after closures to a total 117).

Mr O’Brien said he’d report further on the Dick Smith review at its half-year results in February. “Consumer electronics as a retail category has been experiencing significant challenges, particularly in relation to tightened customer spending on discretionary products, category deflation and the effects of the high $A.”

Dick Smith operates 386 stores in Australia & New Zealand, with 2011 sales up 4.2% to $A1.86 billion but ebit down 14.9% to $A26.8 million.

On becoming Australia’s leading multi‐channel retailer, Mr O’Brien said: “We are really seeing a revolution in retail as customers integrate mobile, social networking and other internet‐enabled technologies into their bricks & mortar shopping experience. It isn’t a question of online or offline, it’s about integrating the 2 seamlessly, and we are increasingly finding that our most valuable customers are ones who do both – for example, in our supermarkets business, customers who shop both in‐store & online spend 70% more than customers who only shop in‐store.”

Link: Woolworths

Valad resumes growth under Blackstone ownership

 

Valad Property Group – listed on the ASX until its takeover by Blackstone Real Estate Advisors LP in August – said on Friday it had bought a 6011m² light industrial park just north of Paris for €6.1 million for its Parc d’Activités fund, which invests in multi-let industrial estates, mostly in the Ile-de-France area. Valad’s 42 properties in France, worth €500 million, are held in 4 of its 15 funds.

Valad Property Group manages $A9 billion of property in 7 geographic regions, through 23 offices in 13 countries. Its core business is value-adding real estate, specialising in multi-let commercial & industrial property, with local asset management teams taking care of about 8500 tenants in 900 properties.

2 affiliates of Blackstone Real Estate Advisors completed their acquisition of Valad’s securities on 26 August 2011. The $A1.80/stapled security price was 56% above the closing price before Blackstone’s offer was launched, but about 33% below net portfolio value.

Valad’s results for the December 2010 half showed its predicament – gearing up to 51.3%, lenders willing to extend its $A200 million facility to the end of 2012 but an $A51 million net loss for the period.

 

Link: Valad Property Group

 

RICS weekly update

 

In this week’s edition, the RICS global real estate weekly focus is on:

Australian monetary policyEuropean monetary policyUS construction spending and new housing initiativesUK construction sentiment

Link: What’s new on RICS Global

Want to comment? Go to the forum.

 

Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 7 October 2001

6 October 2001

Equity Office Properties, biggest real estate investment trust in the US, has revised its earnings expectations for 2002, cutting the expected range of fully diluted funds from operations (FFO) from $US3.57-3.62/common share to $US3.40-3.50, a cut of 4.8-3.3%. The trust will release its third quarter 2001 result on 30 October. Equity Office owns 670 buildings containing 1.2 million m2 of office space.

5 October 2001

Colonial First State Property of Australia, now under the wing of the Commonwealth Bank, has joined English property investor MEPC in selling the Australia Fair shopping centre (half each) on the Gold Coast to Taiwanese businessman Fu Hsien-ta for a total $A161.5 million, at a 9.25% yield. Australia Fair has 61,000m² of shops, cinemas, a council library and some offices on 4.8ha at Southport. Mr Fu’s Yu Feng group owns 18 Australian shopping centres worth more than $A1.1 billion.

Henderson Land Development Ltd’s net profit fell 25% to $HK4.39 billion in the June year after operating profit from property sales fell 77% to $HK1.46 billion. Henderson Land is Hong Kong’s third biggest developer.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 17 November 2002

17 November 2002

Post Properties Inc, of Atlanta, which owns 30,800 residential units, said it intended to cut its dividend rate 42.3% from the present US78c/share to US45c/share, and it would continue selling properties “to strengthen the portfolio and to take advantage of what we believe is currently favourable pricing for apartment assets,” and to provide tax-efficient returns to shareholders. Post also responded to rumours that it was considering selling out: “We have not received any proposals or engaged in any form of discussions, preliminary or otherwise, regarding a possible sale of the company or a management-led buyout. Any reports to the contrary are inaccurate,” chief executive Dave Stockert said.

American Realty Investors Inc has made a tender offer to buy out the other 2 listed entities run by Basic Capital Management Inc — Income Opportunity Realty Investors Inc and Transcontinental Realty Investors Inc. All are based in Dallas and the whole group, including private entities run by BCM, has assets of $US1.8 billion. At last balance date, December 2001, American Realty had $US759 million of assets, Income Opportunity $US92 million and Transcontinental $US709 million. The boards of the 2 target companies have found the offers are fair and left it to investors to decide what to do. BCM’s basic philosophy is to buy under-valued or underperforming properties & maximise value. It also develops, including a 9-storey office building & 206-unit apartment complex at the 400ha Mercer Crossing mixed-use development in Dallas.

Simon Property Group Inc made a hostile takeover bid for Taubman Centers Inc at a 30% premium to the share price that day, and still at an 18% premium this week, but has been rebuffed by controlling shareholder Robert Taubman, who has refused even to have a discussion.

12 November 2002

The biggest US west coast shopping centre owner, Pan Pacific Retail Properties Inc, will take over Center Trust Inc, adding 30 centres to its 108 in 4 states. The enlarged entity will have 1.8 million m² of mall space, $US2.3 billion total market capitalisation and 39% debt:total market capitalisation. Pan Pacific will assume $US136 million of Center’s debt, retire another $US228 million and issue about $US150 million of stock to Center unitholders.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 17 June 2001

Latest: AMP trust expands in Victoria, switch to apartments for Sydney Stamford, Kuala Lumpur launches hub, Tourist Asset Holdings expands.

17 June 2001

An AMP-dominated pair of shopping centres in Victoria will get Botany-style treatment in an $A154 million revamp. In the expansion to a total 143,000m², Knox City will offer traditional mall shopping, Knox Towerpoint will offer outdoor and leisure retail shopping and Melbourne St, running betwen them, will be turned into a traditional high street environment. AMP Henderson Global Investors will manage the redevelopment for owners the AMP Shopping Centre Trust (30%), AMP’s Australian Core Property Fund (20%) and SAS Trustee Corp (5)%, and managed by Deutsche Asset Management).

The Hai Sun Hup Group of Singapore wants to convert the 143-suite Stamford Plaza Sydney into apartments just over a year after opening the all-suites hotel. The hotel has the 157-apartment Stamford on Kent above it, now all sold. The hotel company, now listed separately from the group’s shipping & logistics interests, reported after-tax profit down 39% to $S16.9 million for its March year.

Malaysia has launched the development of a city hub in Kuala Lumpur which will have a high-speed rail link to the city’s airport within a year. The hub will sit on 29ha of former railway land and will be opened in two stages over the next decade to become a city light rail interchange and terminal for intercity trains to Bangkok and Singapore.

Tourism Asset Holdings Ltd has agreed to take up 4.1 million units in Fortland Hotel Property Trust at A25c/unit, giving it 19.74% of the trust, which owns six hotels in Queensland and the Northern Territory.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 2 February 2003

30 January 2003

Lend Lease Corp Ltd has cut the base management fee payable to General Property Trust from 0.55% to 0.4% of gross assets, but introduced a performance fee (5% of the total return performance above the S&P/ASX Property 200 Accumulation Index based on opening market capitalisation). The total annual fee will be capped at the former base fee, 0.55% of gross assets. GPT’s earnings/unit can’t fall below the earnings/unit in the previous corresponding period. While Lend Lease is proud of its move, the fee remains based on growing gross value rather than growing net value/unit.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 2 November 2003

2 November 2003

Taubman Centers Inc said in its 3rd-quarter results announcement the hostile takeover bid from Simon Property Groupand Westfield America Trust, which it beat off after a year, cost it $US6 million over the quarter & $US25 million over 9 months. Taubman reported a US21c/share net loss for the quarter compared to a US3c profit a year earlier. It blamed the difference on extra allocation of Gaap net income to minority interests & bid costs. Diluted funds from operations excluding bid costs were US41c/share (US46c in 2002), but down to US34c/share including those costs. The 3rd quarter balance sheet shows opex exceeded the $US92.7 million revenue by $US3 million, including the $US6 million of bid costs,, and over 9 months the net operating loss was $US12 million on $US284 million of revenue. Sales/ft² increased 4.1%, and average rents rose 2% to $US43.12/ft². Occupancy was an unchanged 85.2%. 360,000ft² of vacated space has been leased to temporary tenants while long-term leases are finalised.
Website: Taubman Centers

Simon Property Groupsaid the failed bid for Taubman Centers Inc cost it $US10.5 million, or US4c/share, expensed in the 3rd quarter. Simon’s diluted funds from operations for the quarter were US97c/share (US93c in 2002) and diluted earnings/share US29c (US32c). Occupancy was unchanged at 91.9%. Same-store sales/ft² rose from $US391 to $US398, total sales/ft² from $US385 to $US394. Average base rents rose 5% ($US1.50) to $US31.87/ft², average initial new leases over the 1st 9months of the year were 25% ($US8.12) higher at $US40.80/ft². Simon made net income of $US42.7 million on $US566.6 million revenue & $US221.7 million net income.
Website: Simon Property Group

The website taking online bids for Lee Castle in Scotland and the titles that go with it has taken more than 1 million hits, but shortly before bidding closed on Saturday the £8.5 million asking price hadn’t been met. The Barony of Lee consists of a fully furnished castle with all its historic and antique contents, including centuries-old tapestries, 3 furnished lodge houses and 106ha. An American family has held it for 15 years.
Website: Lee Castle bids

Lend Lease Corp and General Property Trust have agreed a 51:49 joint venture to take over the Twin Waters resort on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast from the Victorian Government’s Tricontinental Corp Ltd. The resort has a 366-room Novotel and 18-hole golf course but will be redeveloped over 7 years into a masterplanned urban community with 370 homes on it as well, with beachfront house prices ranging from $A400,000 to $A1 million-plus.

InterContinental Hotels Group plc has agreed to buy the Candlewood Suites brand in the US for $US15million and will take over management of 76 Candlewood hotels for Hospitality Properties Trust, increasing its American management portfolio by 30%. UK-based InterComtinental owns, manages, leases or franchises more than 3300 hotels and 515,000 guest rooms around the world. It has 5 existing brands — InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn, Express by Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites.

Australasia’s gone walkabout… Hotel group Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Incis congratulating itself for being named leading hotel group for the 2nd year in a row plus winner of 8 major categories in the 10th annual World Travel Awards. Fine, but these included “Australasia’s leading resort” – the Bora Bora resort & spa in French Polynesia – and “Australasia’s leading golf resort” – the Sheraton in Fiji.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 9 December 2001

8 December 2001

Cleveland-based Forest City Enterprises Inc increased third-quarter earnings before depreciation, amortisation & deferred taxes (ebdt) by 9.6% to $US43.3 million, or by US4c to US91c/share for a 4.6% rise in earnings/share, adjusted for a 3:2 stock split last month. The company has opened 10 projects this year at $US482 million for its share of the cost, and has another 17 projects costing it $US666 million under construction. Forest City increased net operating earnings 10% to $US14.2 million. It wrote off $US5.1 million in revaluations and gained $US54.4 million net from asset sales. Net earnings were $US65.7 million, five times the third-quarter earnings last year, a rise from US29c to $US1.38/share.

How do you measure property investment performances? Many US real estate investment trusts (reits) focus on funds from operations (ffo) in their quarterly statements. Forest City Enterprises Inc advocates a focus on earnings before depreciation, amortisation & deferred taxes (ebdt) as a performance measure to indicate its ongoing strength. “Ebdt is similar to funds from operations, a measure of performance used by publicly traded reits, but may not be directly comparable to similarly titled measures reported by other companies. While property dispositions [that’s a sale], acquisitions or other factors can drive net income up or down dramatically in the short term, management believes ebdt gives a more consistent view of the company’s overall financial performance from quarter to quarter and year to year. Ebdt’s major components are revenues, operating expenses & interest expense. It excludes non-cash items such as depreciation, amortisation, deferred income taxes, the adjustment to recognise rental revenues using the straight-line method & the provision for decline in real estate values, because these items do not affect the actual cash available to the company to fund ongoing projects. Ebdt also excludes non-recurring items such as disposition of properties & extraordinary gains or losses, which may significantly affect net earnings in a single quarter. Management believes ebdt provides important information necessary to understanding the company’s ability to generate cash to meet its funding requirements. Forest City encourages readers of its financial information to focus on ebdt, along with net earnings, to provide a complete and accurate picture of the company’s operating results.”

AMP Bank has finalised the warehousing of $A1.3 billion of residential mortgage assets under a recently established mortgage backed securities programme, which it said would give it more flexibility & further diversification benefits for the management of AMP Banking’s overall funding base.

Unitholders in Two Park Street Trust vote on Monday on the bid by Macquarie Office Trust and General Property Trust to take over the Park St trust in a 50:50 arrangement, raising their stakes from the present Macquarie 17.8% & General 16.4%, at $A4.05/unit. At Macquarie, the holding will be put into the Macquarie Park Street Trust, which will partially finance the acquisition through an issue of equity in the form of reset preference units (RePS) raising up to $A90 million, at an issue price of $A100 each, minimum parcel $A5000. The retail offer opened on 26 November, the institutional offer opens on Wednesday 12 December and both offers close on Friday 14 December. Two Park St is the Sydney address of the 41-storey Citigroup Centre, completed in July 2000, which has 74,090m² net lettable office space and is 89% leased with an average lease term of 10 years. It was valued at $A560 million at 30 June, $A535 million at 30 September. Macquarie’s cost for its 50% is $A254 million.

Westfield America Trust has agreed in principle to buy nine US regional shopping centres from the Richard E Jacobs Group, (click to see fuller story) taking its portfolio to 48 centres worth $US5.7 billion & containing 4.5 million m² of retail space. Westfield said the aggregate consideration was $US756 million, involving $US40 million cash, $US210 million in equity to Jacobs & assumption of $US506 million of non-recourse mortgage debt. An Australian placement of $A200 million was oversubscribed by $A75 million, taking the total equity increase for the project to $A675 million ($US349 million).

5 December 2001

The era of the mall has reached China: Two are being built in Shanghai, a third in Shenzhen and ground was broken this week for the first in Beijing. The 60ha mall will sit on a 37ha site beside the Beijing-Tianjin expressway & fifth ring road in the Yijhuang economic & technology zone. The Da Di (Great Earth) group is spending 3.3 billion yuan on the mall, which will have four supermarkets, three department stores, 300 specialty shops, a pool, skating rink, cinemas & theme garden. The first phase should open in October 2003.

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Snapshot on world property, week to 6 May 2001

Latest: Coles Myer buys Leda hotel chain, Thakral finalising debt restructure, Lend Lease to buy urban community developer Delfin, GPG resolution won’t be on AGP agenda, revaluations boost ING Office.

4 May 2001

Coles Myer Ltd’s Liquorland chain has bought the assets of the Leda hotel chain in Queensland — 10 hotel and 21 bottle shop licensed businesses and a put-and-call option over eight freehold properties. Liquorland already has five hotels and nine liquor outlets in Queensland.

1 May 2001

Singapore-based hotel company Thakral Corp Ltd said today it’s on schedule with its debt-restructuring plan. Thakral is working with Arthur Andersen Associates and legal advisors Khattar Wong & Partners to finalise the wording of a scheme of arrangement. Thakral lost $S46.4 million in the September half, $S100.7 million in the September 1999 half and has been working on a structure which includes cash inputs totalling $S37 million from the Thakral family and switching of some debt to equity.

Lend Lease Corp launched an $A172 million takeover bid for Delfin Ltd, an Adelaide-based urban community and nursing home developer, with unanimous acceptance from the Delfin board. Delfin’s 19.9% shareholder, DCA Group Ltd of Sydney, will invest its $A37.4 million return on high-growth health and eldercare businesses.

Trans Tasman Properties Ltd’s offshoot, Australian Growth Properties Ltd, will not include an alternative share-cancellation resolution proposed for the annual meeting on 8 May because it arrived too late. Guinness Peat Group (Sir Ron Brierley & Gary Weiss) and James Fielding Holdings (Greg Paramor) have acquired 5.5% of AGP and want Trans Tasman to cancel 6.58 million shares it holds, instead of cancelling 1.82 million of Trans Tasman’s dividend-deferred shares. An independent report on the cancellation proposal will be prepared.

Revaluation of 50% of ING Office Fund’s portfolio in Australia has boosted the asset revaluation reserve by $A2.67 million at 31 March. Net asset backing is unchanged at $A1.11 and the weighted average cap rate has firmed slightly from 8.33% to 8.25%. ING had 25% of the portfolio revalued in December and the rest will be valued in June.

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