Good response to 1 Borneo hypermall

By S.C.Cheah

SAGAJUTA (Sabah) Sdn Bhd has achieved 90% sales of its saleable retail lots in its 1 Borneo hypermall in Kota Kinabalu. 

The “phenomenal” take-up rate has been described by industry observers as “unprecedented in the history of Sabah in terms of commercial property sales.” 

Sagajuta managing director and executive chairman Raymond Chan said almost all the sale and purchase agreements had been executed by the purchasers and payments made. 

“We have got our development plans approved and have started piling. Our grand launch will be held either at the end of June or early July this year. We have also three hypermarkets to choose from and we will be announcing it (the hypermarket) in due course,” he told StarBiz in Kuala Lumpur. 

It is understood that prices of the retail lots would rise once the name of the hypermarket had been announced. The lots were initially priced at a very affordable RM688 psf and this has risen to RM888 psf.  

Chan who showcased the RM1bil 1 Borneo to West Malaysian retailers at the Home Ownership Exhibition held at the MidValley Exhibition Centre in Kuala Lumpur early this month said Sagajuta would keep 40% of the retail lots (mostly anchor lots and prime lots) and was only selling 60% of the lots.  

A model of the 1 Borneo shopping centre on display.

He said many of the buyers were from Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsula Malaysia as well as some from Brunei, Singapore, Australia and Canada. 

To ensure better control of the mall, he said prime lots would be leased back from the purchasers and sub-let to selected retailers for an attractive rental rate of possibly 8% per annum. This would ensure the mall's success without sacrificing cash flow. 

“To-date, we have secured quite a number of reputable international, regional and local retailers. We are forming a strategic alliance with one of the biggest property developers in Hong Kong to bring in some of the most promising and trendiest retailers into 1 Borneo. Even our Singapore counterpart is working hand-in-hand with us to bring in their retailers to set up concept stores in 1 Borneo. The reason why so many retailers are so keen and excited is because our rental rate is so attractive.  

“These factors transform into low entry cost to our buyers and investors. In turn, they charge a lower rental rate to attract quality retailers into the mall. Most of the retailers who have signed up with us agreed that with this attractive rental rate, it will enable them to set up their flagship or concept stores in 1 Borneo as they take up a much bigger space than the conventional one,” he said, adding that the priority was to secure the right tenants. 

“Unlike other developers who choose to sell everything while some even claimed that they just planned to lease only, we tend to strike a balance between leasing and selling all the lots. Nowadays, all bankers are getting very prudent with their lending options.”  

Sagajuta's sales & marketing director Francis Wong said the management team had met the biggest developer cum shopping mall operator during a visit to Hong Kong earlier this year. He is confident that many of these Hong Kong retailers especially those selling medium range products like garments and clothes would set up shop in 1 Borneo and use Sabah as a “stepping stone” as Kota Kinabalu is nearer Hong Kong than Kuala Lumpur. “Some have signed up with us,” he said.  

The handicraft and batik gallery in 1 Borneo

I Borneo is jointly developed by Sagajuta (Sabah) Sdn Bhd (lead developer and wholly owned by Ramajuta Properties Sdn Bhd), Warisan Harta Sabah Sdn Bhd the state investment arm of Sabah (co-developer) and the landowner United Sabah Islamic Association. 

There will be more than 600 retail lots, dual-frontage shoplexes, concept and flagship stores, fashion and specialty stores, hypermarket, departmental store, early learning centres, and bridal centre among others. Other features will include a 36-lane bowling centre, nine-screen multiplex cinema and KTV and fitness centre, Autocity for one-stop motoring services, corporate office towers and a 288-room hotel, specialist medical centre and college. There will also be 3,500 parking bays, 32 escalators, four travellators, 23 passenger lifts, 10 goods lifts and one car lift as well as handicapped-friendly facilities. 

It is located along a prime stretch of land along Jalan Sulaiman where five developers have major residential developments. It is adjacent to University Malaysia Sabah, state and federal administrative centres, Sepangar Bay Port and Naval Base, Sabah Medical Centre and big townships like the Kingfisher Park and upcoming Alamesra. 

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