Thursday, July 29, 2010

MapletreeLog to buy 3 properties in Japan

MAPLETREE Logistics Trust has signed a binding memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Kabushiki Kaisha A-Max to acquire three properties in Japan, its manager Mapletree Logistics Trust Management (MLTM) said yesterday.

The properties are the Iwatsuki Logistics Centre, a distribution centre and office in Iwatsuki, with a gross floor area (GFA) of 30,000 sq m; the Iruma Logistics Centre, a distribution centre and office in Iruma, with GFA of 26,000 sq m, and Noda Logistics Centre, a distribution centre and office in Noda, with GFA of 36,000 sq m. All the locations are in Saitama Prefecture, which is Toyko's northern neighbour.

The properties will be acquired for a total of 13 billion yen, (about S$200 million). The vendor, A-Max, is a logistics facilities development and management company.

The acquisition is the sixth announced by Mapletree since December last year, totalling $430 million.

With the completion of all of these acquisitions, MapletreeLog will have a portfolio value of about $3.3 billion.

MLTM said the latest acquisition will have significant benefits arising from attractive net property income (NPI) yield and distribution per unit accretion. The properties are also 100 per cent leased for eight to 10 years, providing stable rental income, and are in good locations.

'Given the low interest rates in Japan, it is likely that this acquisition will be funded predominantly by debt,' said MLTM. 'Any proceeds from equity issuance will likely be applied towards other acquisitions or refinancing of other more expensive debt in the portfolio to maintain a gearing below 45 per cent.'

MLTM chief executive Richard Lai said: 'Japan's logistics market remains attractive to us because it has breadth and depth that is currently unmatched elsewhere in Asia. We will continue to expand our portfolio in Japan by selectively acquiring yield-accretive logistics assets of good quality and location. We also seek to enhance the quality of our income stream through addition of good-quality customers to our diversified customer base. We will continue to focus on such accretive third-party acquisitions as a key strategy to grow our portfolio, and in turn, the returns to our unit-holders.'

Source: Business Times, 29 Jul 2010

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