Sim Lian tops EC market, launches first mixed-use scheme

By Tan Chee Yuen / The Edge Property | January 1, 2017 9:00 AM SGT
This year saw five executive condominium (EC) projects launched, offering a total of 2,656 units. Property and construction group Sim Lian headlined two of those projects, the 534-unit Wandervale in Choa Chu Kang and the 504-unit Treasure Crest in Sengkang.
Launched in July, Treasure Crest is fully sold, making it the best-selling EC in 2016. In fact, over 70% of the units were sold on the first weekend of its launch, at a median price of $716 psf. A close second is Wandervale; launched in February, it achieved 91% sales — or 485 units sold — at a median price of $746 psf. These robust figures were attained against a backdrop of relatively lacklustre sales in other EC projects launched this year.
The crowd at Treasure Crest on the first weekend of bookings

Source: Agent

Mixed-use projects
In November, Sim Lian announced that its Hillion Mall in Bukit Panjang was 90% preleased ahead of completion in 1Q2017. Hillion Mall, with 174,730 sq ft of retail space, has about 100 shops spread across a two-storey retail podium with two basement levels. It is part of a mixed-use scheme that includes Hillion Residences, which sits on top of the mall. Hillion Residences has 546 units in three residential blocks of between 22 and 23 storeys.
Hillion Mall is 90% leased and slated to be completed by 1Q2017

Source: Sim Lian

The entire Hillion mixed-use development is integrated with a transport hub — a bus interchange, the MRT station on the Downtown Line and the LRT station at Bukit Panjang. It marks Sim Lian’s first foray into such a development.
The five anchor tenants at Hillion Mall are NTUC FairPrice, which will operate a 24-hour supermarket; PCF Sparkletots Preschool; Amore Fitness & Boutique Spa; Kopitiam food court; and Best Denki electronics store. The mall fronts Petir Road on Bukit Panjang.
At Hillion Residences, 328 units (or 60% of the total) are one-bedders of 463 to 549 sq ft, while 164 units (30%) are two-bedders of 710 to 872 sq ft. The remaining units are three-bedders of 1,163 sq ft, four-bedders of 1,356 to 1,410 sq ft, and penthouses measuring 2,616 to 3,208 sq ft. The project was launched in March 2013 and as at end-November, 342 units (63%) had been sold. The latest median price was $1,378 psf. Hillion Residences is slated for completion in 1H2018.
The 546-unit Hillion Residences sits on top of Hillion Mall. Scheduled to be completed in 1H2018, it will be integrated with the Bukit Panjang MRT and LRT stations as well as the bus interchange.

Source: Sim Lian

Sim Lian Group has another mixed-use development — Vision Exchange, in Jurong Gateway. The 25-storey commercial tower com prises 640 strata offices units, 53 medical suites and 47 F&B units.
The project was launched for sale in March 2014 and its F&B units are fully sold. Only a handful of the strata office units and medical suites are still available. Strata offices sold ranged from $1.18 million ($2,280 psf) for a 517 sq ft unit to $3.16 million ($2,053 psf) for a 1,539 sq ft unit, based on caveats lodged with URA Realis between August and November this year. Meanwhile, the latest transaction for an F&B/retail space was in August, when a 743 sq ft unit fetched $4.18 million ($5,623 psf).
Interest in Vision Exchange has been strong because there hasn’t been any such strata commercial units in a Grade-A office tower at Jurong Gateway to date. Jurong Gateway is poised to be Singapore’s second CBD.
Overseas ventures
Sim Lian’s portfolio of properties is not confined to Singapore. The company has made inroads in Malaysia and Australia as well.
Its maiden project in Malaysia is Taman Bukit Bayu, a landed housing development in Senai, Iskandar Malaysia, launched in 2010. The following year, Sim Lian launched Desa Baiduri, a mixed-used project in Kulai, also in Iskandar Malaysia. Desa Baiduri contains 241 houses and 19 retail offices.
In Kuala Lumpur, Sim Lian launched KL Trillion, an integrated development with a 33-storey Grade-A office tower, twin 39- storey towers with serviced residences and a five-storey retail podium.
Over the past three years, the company has been acquiring income-generating properties in Australia. To date, it has an investment portfolio of two freehold office buildings and nine freehold shopping centres Down Under. It made its maiden acquisition in 2013 with the purchase of an office building in Sydney for A$65.3 million.
One of Sim Lian’s significant shopping mall acquisitions was made in September 2014, when it purchased five neighbourhood shopping centres in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland for A$133 million. These were acquired from a subsid iary of Woolworths, one of Australia’s largest retail groups.
Its latest acquisition in Australia was in July, when it purchased the freehold investment- grade Dalyellup Shopping Centre in Dalyellup, Western Australia, for A$31.56 million ($33 million).
Sim Lian was founded in 1976 by executive chairman Kuik Ah Han. Having built a substantial portfolio of residential, commercial, industrial and mixed-use developments, the group was listed on the Mainboard of the Singapore Exchange in 2000.
In August, Sim Lian announced a takeover offer by its controlling shareholders, namely the Kuik family, with an offer price of $1.08 a share. By September, Coronation 3G, owned by the Kuiks, had gained control of 90.1% of the total shares in the company, which triggered a compulsory acquisition of all remaining shares. Hence, Sim Lian was delisted on Nov 1.
This article appeared in The Edge Property Pullout, Issue 760 (Dec 26, 2016) of The Edge Singapore.