Thursday, April 22, 2010

Aspial buys Changi Complex

JEWELLERY retailer Aspial Corp has gone back into the property scene to snap up Changi Complex in a collective sale deal for $54.3 million.

It will also have to pay a development charge of $3.6 million for the site, which is zoned ‘residential with commercial on the first storey’, according to property consultants Teakhwa Real Estate, which brokered the deal.

The owners of the 40 apartments will get about $1.2 million each while the owner of the shop unit will get $1.8 million, Teakhwa said.

The freehold site at the busy corner of Bedok Road and Upper Changi Road has a plot ratio of 1.4 and an area of 61,670 sq ft. It could yield a permissible gross floor area of about 94,972 sq ft, including the additional 10 per cent balcony area.

Aspial, which bought the site through its subsidiary World Class Land, said yesterday that it intends to have commercial units on the first storey and flats on the second to fourth storeys.

‘As the property has a wide frontage and is prominently located, the company plans to create an iconic landmark development with a ‘vibrant, hip village setting’ with lifestyle shops and alfresco eateries,’ it added. Teakhwa said the site could accommodate a low-rise development of about 200 units of 500 sq ft each.

It added that the breakeven cost would be $980 per sq ft (psf) to $1,000 psf. New apartments can fetch about $1,300 psf while the shop units can sell in excess of $2,000 psf, Teakhwa said.

Aspial may also be able to buy adjoining land of a total of 10,457 sq ft from the relevant authorities.

This is not the first time the firm – which operates the largest jewellery chain in Singapore under the brand names Aspial, Lee Hwa, Citigems and Goldheart – has ventured into property.

Last August, World Class Land bought a cluster of 18 freehold shophouses fronting Joo Chiat Road and Onan Road for $25.63 million. The properties comprised two rows of nine units of three-storey shophouses with a site area of 35,440 sq ft.

Aspial said the cost of the Changi Complex acquisition and development will be funded internally and through bank borrowings.

The transaction is not expected to have any material impact on the earnings and net tangible assets of the company this year, it said.

Source: Straits Times, 22 Apr 2010

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