Link REIT acquires RMB2.56bn Beijing mall from ARA Asset Management

Hong Kong-listed Link REIT has bought a RMB2.56bn (€324m) Beijing shopping mall from Singapore-based ARA Asset Management.

George Hongchoy, the chief executive of Link REIT’s manager, Link Asset Management Limited, said the Beijing Jingtong Roosevelt Plaza is the REIT’s second acquisition in Beijing and its fourth acquisition in a China Tier-1 city.

Hongchoy said: “Building on our success with EC Mall, our first asset in the (Chinese) capital, we intend to strengthen the mall’s footfall and rental growth by enhancing product and service offerings to serve the district’s expanding customer base.”

Link REIT, Asia’s largest listed REIT by market capitalisation, intends to hold the mixed-use asset as a long-term investment, he said.

After taking into account this new acquisition, Mainland Chinese assets represent about 9.5% of Link’s total asset value. At March 31, Link REIT had assets totalling HK203.09bn (€22.8b).

Ng Beng Tiong, CEO of ARA private funds, said a closed-end fund managed by ARA acquired the retail mall when it was under construction. The mall opened for trading in 2014.

“As an investor-operator with deep in-house asset management and property management expertise, ARA was able to strategically position the property as a community mall in a burgeoning residential district,” Ng said.

He added that the fund had successfully implemented leasing and marketing strategies to achieve high occupancy quickly.

“After stabilising the property, ARA sold it according to the fund’s investment plan. Given the good location and asset performance, the sale attracted strong buyer interests,” said Ng, who is also assistant group CEO of ARA Asset Management.

 

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