Investment trust puts Langham Place Office Tower stake on sale

Champion REIT’s income from the tower was HK$295 million in 2016

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 05 July, 2017, 12:06am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 05 July, 2017, 12:06am

Champion REIT, the real estate investment trust controlled by Hong Kong family business Great Eagle Holdings, has announced that it is looking to sell its interest in the Langham Place Office Tower in the Mong Kok district of the Kowloon peninsula.

According to a statement posted on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange website on Tuesday, Savills (Hong Kong) has been appointed to explore the possibility of the Lo family’s Champion REIT disposing of its entire interest in the tower in light of what was described as “the current favourable commercial property market environment in Hong Kong”.

Since 2008 Champion REIT has owned all but four floors of the 59-storey office tower, equivalent to about 700,000 square feet of gross floor area, according to the company’s website.

Income from the Langham Place tower was HK$295 million (US$37.8 million) for the fiscal year 2016. This figure was 4 per cent more than the previous year, but net property operating expenses also rose by 31 per cent to HK$29 million.

The reit also owns the Langham Place Mall at the base of the property, but no mention of the company’s plans for this portion were in the statement.

Langham Place Mall made headlines earlier this year when an escalator suddenly stopped and reversed, injuring 18 people.

Who deserves more? The Lo family is locked in a nasty feud

Great Eagle owns 65.6 per cent of Champion REIT, and Lo Ka-shui is chairman of both the reit and Great Eagle.

The family is currently locked in a court battle over the role of HSBC as trustee of the family business.