Top Capital unveils latest Birmingham project

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/ EdgeProp
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November 28, 2017 8:40 AM SGT
Top Capital’s 304-unit luxury project The Axium is located in the southern part of Birmingham’s core city centre (Credit: Top Capital Group)
Hong Kong-based, private luxury residential developer Top Capital Group launched its third and latest Birmingham project in Hong Kong and Singapore concurrently on Nov 4 and 5. The project, called The Axium, was also launched in Japan on the weekend of Nov 18 and 19. It is “the first-ever Birmingham project to be showcased to Japanese investors”, according to Florian Loloum, Top Capital Group director of international sales and marketing.
The 304-unit apartment project is 25% sold since it was previewed in Birmingham on Oct 19.
The Axium is located in the southern part of the core city centre, within walking distance of both the Grand Central Station and the New Street rail station. It is also within a 10-minute walk of the new HSBC headquarters; historic financial institution Lloyds Bank, set up in Birmingham more than 250 years ago; upmarket shopping and office development The Mailbox, which also houses a 45,000 sq ft Harvey Nichols department store and two hotels — the Malmaison and AC Hotel; the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery; as well as trendy restaurants and bars.
Birmingham is the second-largest city in the UK after London. The city bears many of the landmarks of its past as a manufacturing powerhouse during the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century. It also boasts more canals than Venice.
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The dining and living area of a one-bedroom apartment at The Axium (Credit: Top Capital Group)
Builder-turned-developer
Top Capital started out as a construction company 30 years ago. Founded by Hong Kong entrepreneur Forest Tang, Top Builders Group, as it was called then, became one of the leading construction companies in Macau during the building boom more than a decade ago. Top Builders was involved in the construction of landmarks such as the Sands Macao, Wynn Macau, Galaxy Macau, Venetian Macao and the Four Seasons Hotel Macao. Besides casinos, it was also involved in government infrastructural projects in Macau, including tunnels and roads. The construction company subsequently diversified into building public and private housing in Macau, Hong Kong and even in Africa, Australia and the UK.
When it first ventured into residential development, the group developed projects in Hong Kong, Macau and Zhuhai, before venturing abroad to Birmingham in the UK, Clark in the Philippines, and Melbourne in Australia.
It was only early this year that the group consolidated its various businesses under Top Capital. The company chose Birmingham when it entered the UK housing market in 2014 because the city was carrying out urban renewal. The company’s maiden development in Birmingham was The Green, which comprised 11 three- to four-bedroom houses located within the Acocks Green suburb. The houses, priced from £235,000, were quickly snapped up by local buyers. The development was completed in April 2016.
More projects in Birmingham
Top Capital’s second development in Birmingham was The Franklin, a 79-unit apartment project in Bournville, a picturesque village close to Birmingham University and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The Franklin was also well received and was completed in May 2016.
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For The Axium, which is Top Capital’s largest development in the British city so far, the developer engaged Birmingham boutique luxury developer Court Collaboration as its local development partner and Birmingham-based architectural firm Glancy Nicholls Architects to design the project. “In terms of property development, we are now the largest Asian investor in the Birmingham residential market,” says Loloum.
The £82 million ($146.7 million) The Axium comprises three linked seven-storey blocks that sit on a 2.3-acre, 250-year leasehold site on Windmill Street, just a few minutes’ walk from Birmingham’s city centre. Units at the project comprise 187 one-bedroom and 117 two-bedroom apartments of between 486 and 861 sq ft. One-bedroom units are priced from £172,950 and two-bedroom units start from £231,950.
The Axium, which is slated for completion in 4Q2019, sits on one of three sites purchased by Top Capital last year. The next project that will be launched is the 230-unit Arden Gate, says Loloum.
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While The Axium may be Top Capital’s maiden launch in Singapore, it is not likely to be its last. “We have seen a great pickup in interest in Singapore,” says Loloum. “Investors here understand what we envision, and understand the fundamentals that are driving the future growth of the Birmingham market.”
Loloum: In terms of property development, we are now the largest Asian investor in the Birmingham residential market (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
The 230-unit Arden Gate at William Street, Birmingham, is the next project in the city to be launched by Top Capital (Credit: Top Capital Group)
This article appeared in EdgeProp Pullout, Issue 807 (Nov 27, 2017).