Ascott is investing S$170.3 million, through its
serviced residence global fund with Qatar Investment Authority
(QIA), in the serviced residence component of the Funan integrated
development in Singapore.
Of the S$170.3 million, the fund is
acquiring the land for the serviced residence component from
CapitaLand Mall Trust for S$90.5 million and developing the
Singapore flagship of Ascott’s millennial-focused lyf brand on the
site for an estimated S$80 million.
To be named lyf Funan Singapore, the nine-storey
co-living property will span about 121,000 square feet in gross floor
area, and will provide 279 units with the
flexibility to offer up to 412 rooms. Scheduled to open in 2020,
the lyf Funan Singapore is an
integral part of Funan which also comprises a mall and two office
Unveiled in November 2016, Ascott has four
lyf properties – lyf Wu Tong Island Shenzhen and lyf DDA Dalian in
China which are scheduled to open in 2018, followed by lyf Funan
Singapore in 2020 and lyf Farrer Park Singapore in 2021.
Besides Singapore and China, Ascott is
actively looking at other potential markets including Australia,
France, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand and the
United Kingdom, as it works towards its target of achieving 10,000
units under the lyf brand worldwide by 2020.
Mr Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s Chief Executive
Officer, said, “Globally, we are transforming Ascott’s business and accelerating our growth through strategic
investments in leading companies such as Quest Apartment Hotels in
Australasia, Synergy Global Housing in the U.S. and Tujia in
China. This year, we have so far invested about S$480 million on
acquisitions and added over 20,000 units to Ascott’s portfolio,
almost double the number of units secured for the whole of 2016.
Through these investments, we are able to strengthen Ascott’s
international cross-selling network, better reach out and cater to
customers as well as enjoy greater economies of scale. With this
growth trajectory, we are confident of racing ahead of our 2020
target of 80,000 units worldwide.”
lyf Funan Singapore is Ascott’s fifth
acquisition under its serviced residence global fund with
committed equity of US$600 million (S$809 million). Set up through
a 50:50 joint venture with QIA in July 2015, Ascott’s largest
private equity fund has committed total investment amount of S$533
million to date on lyf Funan Singapore, La Clef Champs-Élysées
Paris that will open in 2018, Citadines Islington London and Quest
NewQuay Docklands Melbourne that will both open in 2019, as well
as Somerset Shinagawa Tokyo which is already operational. Part of
these investments will be funded by debt.
The Funan acquisition cements Ascott’s position
as the largest and fastest growing serviced residence operator in
Singapore with close to 2,000 units in 12 properties. Within a
span of two months, Ascott has added about 1,000 units across four
properties in Singapore; which includes securing a contract from
Low Keng Huat (Singapore) Limited to manage a 166-unit Citadines
Balestier Singapore that will open in 2021. This follows Ascott’s
recent addition of the 240-unit lyf Farrer Park Singapore that was
also awarded by Low Keng Huat, as well as a prime 299-unit
serviced residence at CapitaLand’s landmark integrated development
at Raffles Place. Both serviced residences are also slated to open
In Singapore, Ascott currently operates six
serviced residences including Ascott Orchard Singapore, Ascott
Raffles Place Singapore, Citadines Fusionopolis Singapore,
Citadines Mount Sophia Singapore, Somerset Bencoolen Singapore and
Somerset Liang Court Singapore.
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