Tuesday, July 6, 2010

CMA buys Metro's Gurney Plaza Extension for RM215m

CMA to grant CMMT right of first refusal to acquire Gurney Plaza Extension

METRO Holdings has announced that it exercised its put option to require CapitaRetail Gurney to acquire its interest in the 134,549-sq-ft retail property Gurney Plaza Extension in Penang for RM215 million ($92.9 million).

In 2007, CapitaLand acquired the 700,000-sq-ft Gurney Plaza for $336.8 million. At the time, it said it would form the seed assets for its proposed Malaysian retail real estate investment trust (Reit).

Metro Holdings said the consideration for the disposal of Gurney Plaza Extension was arrived at by negotiations on a willing seller, willing buyer basis and is to be wholly satisfied in cash.

Metro Holdings said that net proceeds of the divestment will be added to the working capital of the group and used to build on the group's presence and investment in the region.

Gurney Plaza Extension is a nine-storey retail block located along Gurney Drive in Penang. It is part of the Gurney Park development.

Separately, CapitaMalls Asia (CMA) said yesterday that it will be granting CapitaMalls Malaysia Trust (CMMT) a right of first refusal to acquire Gurney Plaza Extension after the finalisation of all the terms and conditions of the acquisition.

CMA announced in June that it would make an RM848 million initial public offering (IPO) for Malaysia's largest 'pure-play' shopping mall Reit.

CMA said that CMMT is still in the midst of its IPO and is likely to make a decision on whether to acquire Gurney Plaza Extension only after its listing on Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad, the securities exchange of Malaysia.

The units for CMMT are tentatively priced at RM1.08 each, although the final price could change as it will be determined only after a book-building exercise undertaken by the listing's joint global coordinators, CIMB and JPMorgan.

CMMT's prospectus expects the trust to be the largest Reit on the Kuala Lumpur stock exchange with a market capitalisation of RM1.46 billion on an asset base of RM2.13 billion. It will also be the most liquid with a free float of up to 67 per cent.

Metro Holdings said that the divestment is not expected to have any significant impact on the consolidated net tangible asset per share and the consolidated earnings per share of the Metro Group for the year ending March 31, 2011.

Source: Business Times, 6 Jul 2010

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