Published June 28, 2008

SPH's Paragon valued at $2b


SINGAPORE Press Holdings' Paragon shopping centre in Orchard Road is now worth $2 billion, about 10 per cent up from its valuation of $1.82 billion a year ago.

The higher valuation came amid higher rents and continued strong demand.

'Rents are firm, increasing as of last June. Occupancy is at 100 per cent,' said Lydia Sng, executive director of valuations for property consultancy Knight Frank, which carried out the latest valuation yesterday. The earlier valuation of $1.82 billion on June 28, 2007, was also done by Knight Frank.

The Paragon is undergoing a $45 million makeover to update its facade and increase retail space. The renovation is slated for completion in October.

SPH said earlier that the makeover was part of a continuous effort to enhance the retail environment and shopping experience for Paragon customers.

In addition, the commercial space above its retail podium will be expanded - at a cost of $37 million, including the payment of land premium. This is scheduled to be completed by end-2008.

The total cost of the facade makeover and the addition of commercial space is $82 million.

Paragon remains open and operates as it normally does during the renovation period.

SPH will be releasing its financial results for the third quarter ended May 31, 2008, on July 11.