Sino Land’s US$3 billion spending spree makes it Hong Kong’s most active buyer of land this year
Company snaps up a seventh site this year, to be redeveloped into a residential complex in partnership with electric utility CLP
Hong Kong developer Sino Land has emerged as the city’s most active buyer of land this year, buying seven sites either by itself or through joint ventures and spending an estimated over HK$22 billion (US$2.8 billion).
It added the seventh site on Friday, winning a tender to redevelop the 77-year-old former headquarters of electricity company CLP Group in Mong Kok into a luxury residential project.
CLP and Sino will collaborate on the project and plan to redevelop the site into a housing project of 175 units in three, 25-storey residential towers. They will also preserve a historic clock tower by converting it into a community facility, including an electricity museum.
“The site, in the heart of Kowloon with beautiful views of Kadoorie Hill, is such a rarity,” said Daryl Ng, deputy chairman of Sino Land. “It is also is a neighbourhood with an extensive schools network.”
Ng did not disclose the amount of Sino’s investment.
With the site likely to yield a potential floor area of about 310,000 square feet, each flat could be as big as 1,700 sq ft.
Victor Lai Kin-fai, chief executive of consultancy Centaline Professionals, said the construction alone would cost about HK$2.1 billion, assuming HK$7,000 to HK$8,000 per square foot for a luxury residential project.
“Although Sino Land has been aggressive in its land acquisitions, most of the projects will be developed as joint ventures in a bid to reduce the risk at a time when property prices are climbing to record highs,” said Lai.
Out of the seven plots Sino Land won in tenders offered by government and subway operator MTR Corp this year, only two residential sites and one industrial plot were bought outright. It was part of a consortium in the other four sites.
The two residential sites were in Ma On Shan, in Hong Kong’s north, and one close to Soho district on Hong Kong Island, while the industrial site was in Kwai Chung, also in the north.
The latest investment comes a month after Sino Land, as part of a consortium of five companies – the others being Shimao Property Holdings, Wheelock Properties, K Wah International and SEA Holdings – won a residential site in Cheung Sha Wan for HK$17.28 billion, the city’s most expensive residential plot.
Earlier this month, Sino Land and Kerry Properties won a tender from MTR Corp for a 600-home project in the second phase of a development close to Wong Chuk Hang subway station in the south of Hong Kong Island.
In May, Sino Land won a project at West Rail’s Kam Sheung Road station with China Overseas Land & Investment and K Wah International.