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Essential IR Insights Newsletter - February 2023

Starwood bids for Australian Unity; NextDC in Asia Pacific Data Centre buyout

* Starwood Capital Group is offering to takeover Australian Unity Office Fund for A$2.95 per unit. The unsolicited, indicative and non-binding all-cash proposal represents an aggregate value of nearly A$480.4 million with respect to the targeted real estate investment trust's 162,831,952 outstanding shares as of Nov. 7, 2017.

* NextDC Ltd. is offering to buy all the securities it does not own in Asia Pacific Data Centre at a price of A$2.00 apiece. The bidder said that 360 Capital Group, which owns a 67.3% stake in the target, intends to accept the scheme.

Hong Kong and China

* An unnamed financial group offered to buy Henderson Land Development Co. Ltd.'s FWD Financial Centre office building in Hong Kong's Central district for HK$7.3 billion, Mingtiandi reported, citing the Hong Kong Economic Times. The property, which provides 182,400 square feet of office space at 308-320 Des Voeux Rd. Central in Sheung Wan, was reportedly put on the block in 2017 for HK$5.5 billion.

* Sunac China Holdings Ltd.'s contracted sales grew 24% on an annual basis in September to 53.35 billion yuan. The unaudited sales figure for the reporting month corresponds to contracted sales area of about 3,532,000 square meters and contracted average selling price of 15,110 yuan per square meter.

* Country Garden Holdings Co. Ltd.'s decision to slice prices at its developments in Pudong, Shanghai, and Shangrao in the Chinese province of Jiangxi, was met with protests from buyers who already paid full price ahead of the discount, the South China Morning Post reported. Protesters reportedly gathered at the projects' sites on Oct. 6 after prices were reduced as part of the incentive, which according to a company spokesperson was only offered to "loyal customers" who purchase more than one flat.

* The Lands Department of Hong Kong issued 12 pre-sale consents for residential developments and three presale consents for non-residential developments in the third quarter. About 2,164 of the residential units are expected to be completed next year and the other 4,815 units to be finished in 2020.

* The Urban Renewal Authority of Hong Kong received 17 tenders for the Castle Peak/Un Chau Street Development Project in Sham Shui Po. The project covers a site area of 1,650 square meters and will be provide a maximum gross floor area of about 14,840 square meters and is limited to provide apartments that are at least 300 square feet.

* R One Space launched its first co-working space in Hong Kong, Sing Tao Daily reported. Located in Causeway Bay, the 16,000-square-foot office can be split into 32 small offices or 210 desk space, and short term rental starts from one month contracts with a minimum rent of HK$9,000 per month for an office and HK$5,500 for a desk.


* Brookfield Asset Management Inc. and Partners Group Holding AG are believed to have submitted separate bids for Blackstone Group LP's data centers in Australia, The Australian Financial Review's Street Talk reported, citing unnamed sources. The properties that are held by the private equity giant's DCI Data Centers portfolio company are being offered through a process overseen by sale adviser JPMorgan Chase & Co.

* Soilbuild Business Space REIT spent nearly A$121.0 million to complete its first property acquisitions in Australia. The Singaporean trust said it used a combination of debt financing and proceeds the from the issuance of S$65.0 million in 6.00% subordinated perpetual securities to finance the transaction.

* Stockland, in a partnership with the Catholic Diocese of Broken Bay in New South Wales, lodged plans to develop a 29-story mixed-use building in the Sydney suburb of Epping, The Australian reported. The project planned for a church and school site will feature an estimated 205 retirement apartments and 132 aged-care beds.

* Multiplex topped out a luxury retail and residential building in Melbourne, The Australian reported. The 10-story property forms part of LK Property Group Pty. Ltd.'s A$800 million development in the city, which will also include the 50-story mixed-use LK Tower.


* The 255-unit Thomson View Condominium failed to secure necessary approvals from its owners to continue with a proposed S$938 million collective divestment, The Independent (Singapore) reported. The latest rejection marks the fourth failed attempt at an en bloc sale of the 540,314-square-foot site, which houses 200 apartments, 54 townhouses and a one shop unit.


* Tokyo Tatemono Co. Ltd. opened the Hotel Gracery Asakusa in Tokyo's Kaminarimon tourism district Oct. 4, Jutaku-Shimpo-Sha reported. The real estate developer will also open The Square Hotel Ginza in Tokyo's Ginza district in November.

* According to data from Tokyo-based real estate service firm At Home Co. Ltd., new detached house prices in Tokyo and surrounding prefectures averaged ¥34.66 million in August, down 1.4% from July, Tokyo's The Nikkei reported.

Other real estate news

* An unnamed Asian buyer is forming a £472 million joint venture with Hammerson Plc as part of the deal for the £236 million acquisition of a 50% stake in the European REIT's Highcross shopping center in Leicester, U.K. The agreement is scheduled to be completed later in 2018, subject to the approval of the European Union competition clearance and joint venture finance.

The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific, Real Estate edition is updated by 6:30 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.

Rollen Catorce, Emily Lai and Jaekwon Lim contributed to this report.