Foreign buyer forking out S$430.1m for Citimac in en bloc sale

Price works out to S$1,047 psf ppr for the freehold property; buyer said to be linked to family from China

July 25, 2017

Kalpana Rashiwala

CITIMAC, a freehold industrial complex near Tai Seng MRT Station, is being sold for S$430.1 million, or S$1,047 per square foot of potential gross floor area (GFA).

The unit land price is inclusive of an estimated S$82 million development charge.

The collective sale was awarded over the weekend, following a tender for the property that closed on June 21.

Edmund Tie & Co brokered the deal.

When contacted, Swee Shou Fern, senior director for investment advisory at the group, declined to identify the buyer, beyond saying that it is a foreign developer.

Industry buzz has it that the buyer may be linked to the Zhao family from China, who were behind the entity that last year bought Cityvibe in Clementi through a sale of shares in the company that owns the four-storey commercial building near Clementi MRT station.

At Citimac, owners of the existing 110 strata units, which range in size from about 160 sq m to 500 sq m (or 1,722 sq ft to 5,382 sq ft), will receive sales proceeds of between S$2.1 million and S$10 million per unit.

Unless unanimous approval for the collective sale is garnered from the owners, the proposed collective sale of Citimac will be subject to approval by the Strata Titles Board and, if necessary, the High Court.

Market watchers noted that Citimac was previously put up for en bloc sale in 2014, with a minimum price of S$550 million.

Located at the corner of MacPherson and Upper Paya Lebar roads, the eight-storey light industrial bulding comprises showrooms, warehouses and factories. It was completed in the 1980s.

The 139,789 sq ft site can be redeveloped into a new project with 489,262 sq ft GFA. The site is zoned for Business 1-White use with a 3.5 maximum gross plot ratio.

Of this, at least 2.5 plot ratio (translating to 349,473 sq ft GFA) shall be for Business 1 (or B1) use; the remaining GFA of up to 139,789 sq ft will be for white uses.

Most developers would likely utilise the white component for retail, given the site's prime MacPherson Road frontage.

The Citimac site was previously reported as the largest freehold Business 1-White redevelopment site in Singapore to be put up for sale.

Other deals in the vicinity in recent years include that of Guang Ming Industrial Building at S$45.8 million or S$837 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr) in September 2013; Irving Industrial Building for S$160 million or S$923 psf ppr in November 2014; and Harper Kitchen for S$51.1 million or S$834 psf ppr in early 2016.

The industrial and commercial hub of Tai Seng is home to companies such as BreadTalk Group, Sakae Holdings, Charles & Keith, Tee Yih Jia Group, Malaysia Dairy Industries and Lian Beng Group.