Right timing seen for UOA Development listing

  • Business
  • Saturday, 21 May 2011

SOON-TO-BE listed property developer UOA Development Bhd was previously renowned for successful small to medium-sized residential and commercial projects in the Klang Valley.

That changed in 2005 when the company acquired a 60 acres in Kampung Kerinchi, Kuala Lumpur for its flagship Bangsar South City development.

Half of the site is for residential developments, with the other for commercial.

Work on Bangsar South commenced in 2007, and since then, developments such as The Village, The Horizon (Phase 1) and The Park Residences (Phase 1) have been completed.

In 2010, the commercial development of Bangsar South, comprising The Horizon, The Vertical and The Sphere, was designated as a MSC Malaysia Cybercentre by Multimedia Development Corp Sdn Bhd.

UOA Development director Alan Charles Winduss says he remains amazed by the changes that have taken place in the landscape of Kampung Kerinchi over the last few years.

“Six years ago, we were having durians by the roadside here in a visit to study the area. We had a vision, in seeing what could be done here it is a unique location that is close to the city,” recalls Winduss.

He says Bangsar South will be developed in stages, based on market demand.

Bangsar South has an estimated gross development value (GDV) of RM8.3bil, and is expected to be completed in seven more years.

Based on GDV, only 12% to 15% of the site has been fully developed.

“We have completed over RM1bil in GDV over less than three years, and are currently constructing another RM1.2bil worth of developments in Bangsar South,” says UOA Holdings Sdn Bhd senior manager Eugene Lee Chin Jin.

Lee says upcoming works in Bangsar South will include a RM100mil clubhouse, a six-acre park, a medical centre and water recreation centre.

Concerning the issue of rising land and construction costs, Winduss says the company has an advantage with its fully integrated operation model.

“Most work ranging from construction, legal, architecture to quantity surveying is done in-house. This helps us to remain competitive and also, mitigate rising land costs to a degree,” says Winduss.

According to Lee, the company is happy with the market response to Bangsar South.

“The Park Residences (Phase 1), which was delivered late last year, has a 90% take-up rate.”

The company is also developing Binjai 8, a freehold 40-storey premium service suites development with 310 units sized from 753 sq ft to 1,785 sq ft per unit, nestled in the vicinity of the Suria KLCC shopping mall, Kuala Lumpur.

Binjai 8, which has a GDV of RM393mil, is due for completion in 2013.

Another ongoing project is Setapak Green, a freehold 26-storey condominium enclave with 445 units sized from 1,362 sq ft to 1,588 sq ft per unit, located on a 3.3-acre site off Jalan Gombak, Kuala Lumpur.

Setapak Green, which has a GDV of RM196mil, is also due for completion in 2013.

Lee says the take-up rate for Binjai 8 and Setapak Green is 65% and 75% respectively.

Meanwhile, the company's Kepong Business Park, with a GDV of RM193mil, situated on an 18.7 acres in Kuala Lumpur is due to be completed later this year.

As at Dec 31, 2010, UOA Development has a total saleable and lettable area of more than 300,000 sq m of properties under development with a GDV of RM2bil to be completed over the next three years.

The company has a further total potential saleable and lettable area of more than 1.2 million sq m being held for future development projects with an estimated GDV in excess of RM8bil.

The company is a unit of United Overseas Australia Ltd (UOA), which was founded and listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) in 1987.

Its headquarters and business operations has been based in Kuala Lumpur since 1989.

UOA is also listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange (SGX) in 2008, while its associate company UOA Real Estate Investment Trust (UOA REIT) was listed on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia in 2005.

For its listing exercise on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia targeted on June 8, UOA Development has received approval for the proposed listing of its entire enlarged issued and paid-up share capital of up to 1.2 billion 5 sen shares.

The initial public offering (IPO) consists of an institutional offering of up to of 337 million shares to Malaysian and foreign institutional and selected investors (including approved bumiputra investors) and a retail offering of 70 million shares to the public, eligible directors and employees of UOA Development among others.

The company plans to raise RM1.18bil from the IPO, out of which RM348mil will be repaid to the selling shareholders.

The remainder of the proceeds will be for debt repayment and working capital.

For FY10, UOA Development posted a net profit of RM285.8mil on revenue of RM375.2mil.

This was a 61% jump in net profit, compared with its reported net profit of RM177.6mil on revenue of RM427.8mil in FY09.

For FY11, it intends to pay 30% to 50% of net profit as dividends to shareholders, according to its prospectus.

The indicative offer price of the shares to be listed is RM2.90 per share.

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