Shui On Land sells Chongqing assets to China Vanke for 4.1 billion yuan
Deal will generate 1.7 billion yuan in profit for developer while paring its debt
Shui On Land, the property developer founded by tycoon Vincent Lo Hong-sui, has sold one of its largest mixed commercial projects in mainland China for 4.1 billion yuan (US$596.3 million).
In a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Friday night, Shui On said it would reap a profit of about 1.7 billion yuan by selling a 79.2 per cent stake in Chongqing Tiandi to China Vanke, the second-largest developer in the country.
The deal would also reduce its net gearing by 11 per cent, the firm said.
Shui On will keep a 19.8 per cent stake in the project.
The disposal is in line with the developer’s strategy to pare its debt through asset sales.
With a ratio of debt to common equity of 123.8 per cent, Shui On has been selling assets since 2015 to reduce debt as part of chairman Lo’s “asset-light” strategy, according to his interview in the March issue of The Peak magazine, which is published by the South China Morning Post.
Located at the centre of the city’s Yuzhong district, the Chongqing Tiandi complex comprises five grade A office buildings, residential area, a commercial centre as well as leisure and entertainment facilities.
The assets to be sold to Vanke cover an area of about 871,000 sq metres, including unfinished residential and commercial spaces.
Shui On is also seeking buyers for a stake in its Ruihong Xincheng mixed residential-commercial project in Shanghai.
The project, located at the city’s golden triangle area between The Bund waterfront, the northern Bund and the Lujiazui business district, has a proposed gross floor area of 1.74 million sq metres.
It comprises Ruihong Tiandi, a landmark kilometre-long commercial street with 550,000 sq metres of retail space, as well as high-end residences, entertainment, fashion, food and beverage retailers, boutique hotels and high-end offices.
Vanke is also among the parties in talks to buy the assets.
Shares in Shui On rose 0.6 per cent to HK$1.77 before the deal was announced. Vanke added 0.2 per cent to 20.55 yuan on the Shenzhen exchange.