Leveraging our strong track record and expertise in property development and asset management in Singapore, we have established growth platforms in our key overseas markets – China, UK, Japan and Australia. By deepening our presence in these key markets, we have enhanced our business resilience, with the flexibility to capitalize on strategic opportunities overseas to complement our core local operations. In 2018, the Group embarked on our G-E-T strategy – focusing on Growth, Enhancement and Transformation to renew and reposition our business, sharpen our product value proposition and expand our asset portfolio to deliver performance outcomes.
In 2018, we completed Phase 2 (comprising Tower 2 – 430 units) of Hong Leong City Center (HLCC), CDL China’s first integrated development located in Suzhou Industrial Park. HLCC’s 30,000 sqm premium Grade A office tower was also completed and will be fitted out before leasing. The five-star M Social Hotel will be operated by M&C and is slated to open in Q1 2020. The 56,000 sqm retail podium block, HLCC mall, opened in June and is currently 85% occupied.
The Group expanded its recurring income portfolio in China with the acquisition of an office block within Yaojiang International complex in Shanghai’s prime North Bund Business District for RMB 148 million. Distrii will be the master tenant of the property.
As part of our portfolio diversification, the Group has been making strategic investments in PropTech. In 2018, we invested in the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of China’s leading data-based real estate agency, E-House and Dragonrise Pan-Al High Tech Fund.
In September 2018, we acquired Aldgate House, a 211,000 sq ft building beside Aldgate Underground Station for £183 million ($328 million). It comprises Grade A office, retail and ancillary spaces over two basements, ground, mezzanine and eight upper floors.
This transaction was followed by the acquisition of 125 Old Broad Street, a 329,200 sq ft office tower in the heart of the City of London and main financial district, in October for £385 million ($687 million). Formerly known as the Stock Exchange Tower, the property is spread over three basement levels and 26 floors, offering panoramic views of the city.
We completed Park Court Aoyama The Tower, a JV residential project with Mitsui Fudosan Residential Co., Ltd., in January 2018. Our prime 180,995 sq ft freehold site in the Shirokane residential enclave within central Tokyo will remain in our land bank, while we continue to explore various design options to maximise the development potential of the site.
In 2018, we completed our JV residential project in Brisbane. The 476-unit Ivy and Eve located on Merivale Street in Brisbane was completed, with majority of the units sold and settlements achieved. The Group’s collaboration with Waterbrook Lifestyle Resorts to develop two freehold luxury retirement villages are in planning stages. Both Waterbrook Bayview in North Sydney and the Waterbrook Bowral in New South Wales are expected to complete in 2021.