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Monday October 1, 2007
Developer picks Foster and Partners to spearhead its branding abroad
BANDAR Raya Developments Bhd (BRDB) will be using “The Troika” as its brand name for some of its future high-end residential developments abroad.
Chief executive officer Datuk Jagan Sabapathy wants The Troika, the name of its very high-end condominium in the Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC) development, to further drive BRDB's reputation abroad.
“With this famous brand name, people especially foreigners, will know that we are a serious player,” BRDB chief operating officer C. C. Pan told StarBiz in Hong Kong last week.
Indeed, the Foster and Partners name is so popular that its name conjures an image of a world-class product that is not only a market leader in terms of design, pricing and prestige but trust.
“BRDB had the vision to hire Foster and Partners which is a fantastic brand name and which sees itself as our partner. It went to the extent of placing a partner and a very senior architect at The Troika site,” Pan said, adding that BRDB was paying top dollars for this arrangement.
“We do not want to be stingy, as we want to deliver more than what we have promised to our purchasers. We are giving a 5 or 6-star product at 3-star global price when compared to countries like Singapore,'' he said, adding that BRDB is focused on delivering premium products.
Pan, a civil engineer by training, said Foster and Partners was very selective with whom it teamed up with.
“If you want to engage them, they may not accept you. They also want to check you out first.
Foster and Partners founded by Lord Norman Foster, has received more than 300 awards and citations for design excellence, and won 65 national and international design competitions.
Its buildings are famous all over the world.
The Troika with a gross development value of RM840mil is slated for completion in mid 2009. It boasts of two double volume glass-encased bridges connecting the sky lobby, which spans each of The Troika's three towers. The sky lobby offers a great view of the Petronas Twin Towers.
Pan said about 70% of the units had been sold. Four of the eight penthouses have been sold to foreigners. One of them is a four-level, 21,000 sq ft “luxurious penthouse” whose current price is about RM57 mil.
More foreigners have heard of the project and they are also encouraged by recent incentives including the waiving of the Real Property Gains Tax in April this year.
Although Pan is upbeat on the high-end residential property market, particularly in the KLCC area, he lamented the continued “low pricing” by some of the developments.
“Sometimes, our property developers may not be doing justice to the country when they still price their products too low. Even countries that are less developed than Malaysia are more expensive than us.
“By moving up the value chain and pricing our products higher, we are also helping our nation to set fair value for its assets.”
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