Festival Walk, Hong Kong

Mapletree Festival Walk mallA fund managed by Singaporean real estate developer Mapletree set new records for land prices in Hong Kong’s Kowloon district recently with its purchase of a commercial site for HK$3.77 billion (US$486 million).

The successful bid by Mapletree investments, beat out competing offers by local Hong Kong firms including Swire Properties, New World Development, and Li Ka-shing’s Cheung Kong Holdings. The sale price also exceeded analyst expectations.

Commenting on the acquisition in a company statement, Mapletree CEO Mr Hiew Yoon Khong said,

We are excited at the potential this good-sized site presents and it gives us the opportunity to develop Mapletree’s first greenfield commercial development in Hong Kong SAR.

At the price agreed to by Mapletree, the accommodation cost of the 55, 026 square foot (5112 square metre) site near the disrict’s Ngau Tau Kok MTR station works out to HK$5708 per square foot ($530.29 per square metre). Both the total sum of the purchase and the accommodation costs are records for Kowloon.

Expanding Beyond Singapore

Mapletree, which is owned by Singapore’s government-linked investment firm Temasek Holdings, has been rapidly expanding its portfolio in the region, and Mapletree Investments already owns the Festival Walk mall in Kowloon.

Mapletree Investments closed on its US$1.4 billion China Opportunity Fund II in September last year, and in March of 2013, Mapletree started work on a RMB 5 billion mixed-use project in Shanghai’s Minhang district. The company also owns and manages a number of industrial parks in China and around the region.

The developer, which originally concentrated on industrial and logistics assets, has quickly been expanding into retail and office projects.

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