KUALA LUMPUR, 14 September: Sunway Group’s property arm Sunway Property, is on the lookout for more land near new public infrastructures and transit-oriented developments (TOD), said its managing director Sarena Cheah.
“We are looking for more land near TODs because we do see the potential when all MRTs and LRTs are completed, just like looking at how the more advanced countries are leveraging on that, we find that there is a lot of value,” she told reporters at a briefing on the opening of Sunway Velocity Hotel today.
The group has made five acquisitions so far this year, two of which are close to its existing projects, namely Subang Jaya and Cheras, while three are in Kampung Atap, Kajang and Wangsa Maju.
The group has 3,330 acres of land with a gross development value (GDV) of RM55 billion. Cheah said there will be more new launches next year but will only reveal the plans later this year.
“I think there is an opportunity now, when the market is slow, for us to buy and hence we are a bit more aggressive and will continue to do that, looking around the central region over the next few years,” she said.
She said the group is cautious but still confident overall due to its products and locations. Although it is not scaling back on its projects, it is able to do so due to its diversified business, which includes malls, construction, education, theme parks and hospitals.
“For some of the launches if we don’t feel it is the right time to launch, we are able to hold it back … that (diversified business) complements us very well especially in slow markets and it allows us to leverage on opportunities such as landbank or maybe even undervalued assets around town, which are in very good locations; we will also look out for that,” she added.
Meanwhile, the 351-room Sunway Velocity Hotel will begin operations on Sept 20 with a 56% occupancy target till year-end and a full year occupancy target of 75% next year. The mid-market hotel has a gross development cost of RM146 million and is located within Sunway Velocity Kuala Lumpur, an integrated TOD project in Cheras.
“For the hotel, we anticipate about 60% corporate and 40% leisure base. In 2017 and 2018, we are expecting Malaysians to constitute 60% of our guests with the balance coming from Singapore, China and guests residing in the Asia Pacific region,” said Sunway Hotels and Resorts cluster director of operations Kelly Leong.
Cheah said the hotel complements the other components within the RM4 billion project, including the mall, office towers, serviced residences and a medical centre. The RM300 million 240-bed hospital will enable the group to tap into medical tourism.
“The last component for Sunway Velocity will be the hospital, which we are looking to open at the end of 2018 or early 2019. This completes the overall concept of being integrated where you can do everything here without travelling very much and yet you are situated at the fringe of Kuala Lumpur, giving it a very good value for all tourists, shoppers, residents or even patients,” she said.
Sunway Bhd’s share price rose one sen to close at RM4.48 today with a total of 3.28 million shares traded. Its market capitalisation stood at RM9.26 billion.
— THE SUN