Business

Frasers gets former Zouk site with bid of $995.4m

Frasers Centrepoint Limited (FCL) trumped nine other bidders with an offer of $955.4 million for a residential plot in Jiak Kim Street, the former site of popular nightspot Zouk.

And Allgreen Holdings emerged top among seven bidders for a residential parcel in Fourth Avenue, lodging a tender of $552.96 million.

The 99-year leasehold sites were on the Reserve List of the Government Land Sales (GLS) programme and were triggered for public tender after minimum acceptable bids were made.

The 13,482 sq m site in Jiak Kim Street comes with commercial use on the first storey.

FCL's bid translates to $1,732.55 per square foot per plot ratio (psf ppr), only 0.6 per cent above the bid from Hong Leong Holdings and Hong Realty, which are controlled by Singapore tycoon Kwek Leng Beng.

This toppled the last high of $1,239 psf ppr at the site for GuocoLand's Martin Modern in June last year, by 39.9 per cent.

The $552.96 million bid by fellow tycoon Robert Kuok's Allgreen Holdings for the 18,532.2 sqm site at Fourth Avenue reflects a land rate of $1,540 psf ppr, which is 2 per cent above the second-highest bid, from Bukit Sembawang Estates.

Allgreen Properties scooped up two collective sale sites at Bukit Timah area last week.

The bullish bids come after warnings from the Government on over-exuberance in the property market.

"Despite the authority flagging the risk of excessive exuberance... the bidding for choice sites has not shown any sign of slowing," said Cushman & Wakefield research director Christine Li.

STRONG SHOWING

Ms Tricia Song, research head for Singapore at Colliers International, said the strong showing for the Jiak Kim Street and Fourth Avenue sites "clearly reflect bidders' confidence in a recovering... market amid the positive economic outlook".

Frasers Centrepoint Singapore chief executive Christopher Tang said the ex-Zouk site is "a rare location in a cosmopolitan locale, filled with rich heritage and character, sitting right on the edge of the Singapore River".

Market watchers felt that the aggressive price Allgreen paid for Royalville could have deterred some developers from bidding for the site at Fourth Avenue. Still, having seven bidders are considered a respectable showing, Ms Li said.

JLL head of research and consultancy Tay Huey Ying noted the batching of tender closings for the two sites "appeared to have helped spread the competition for each site, and potentially taming the bids somewhat".

He added: "Interestingly, local developers continue to maintain their hold on the prime district market, pipping foreign developers such as China's CSC Land and Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka Shing's Japura for the two sites at Jiak Kim Street and Fourth Avenue, respectively."

Property