Wheelock to sell second tower at One Bay East in Kwun Tong

Most bidders are negotiating to buy the entire grade-A office building in Kwun Tong, says company chairman Stewart Leung

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 11 March, 2014, 2:56pm
UPDATED : Monday, 17 March, 2014, 7:02pm

Following last year's HK$4.5 billion sale of an office tower in Kwun Tong, Wheelock Properties will soon dispose of the second building in the twin-tower development.

"There are more than eight parties in talks with us to buy the remaining building at One Bay East," chairman Stewart Leung Chi-kin said, with most of them wanting the entire building.

Leung refused to give details but hinted that the sale would be clinched in the coming months.

Located in Hoi Bun Road, One Bay East is a grade-A office development by Wheelock Properties, a wholly owned unit of Hong Kong-listed Wheelock & Co.

The West Tower was pre-sold to Manulife (International), Canada's biggest insurer, in April, for the firm's own use. The deal was the largest single purchase of an office tower in Kowloon. The project is expected to be completed later next year.

Analysts expect the East Tower to attract companies seeking cheaper rents outside the Central business district.

The government plans to transform Kowloon East - which comprises Kai Tak, Kowloon Bay and Kwun Tong - into another core business district of the city.

The proposed sale of the East Tower could help Wheelock achieve its target of HK$10 billion in property sales this year in the face of an uncertain outlook for the housing market.

Leung said the firm would start selling several residential projects from May onwards, including the second phase of The Austin, a luxury development in West Kowloon. Sales of the first batch were launched in November last year.

Other developments in the pipeline for sale are a Tseung Kwan O project and a venture with Nan Fung Development on Mount Nicholson Road, on the Peak.

In the C-Suite interview, Stewart Leung reveals his market outlook and his management philosophy. He also urges the government to import labour to ease the present shortage.