Mapletree readies Hong Kong and China REIT

Temasek-owned Mapletree Investments says it is launching the first ever REIT to target the ‘robust’ commercial property markets of both Hong Kong and Greater China.

Mapletree Investments is launching the first ever REIT to target what it calls the ‘robust’ commercial property markets of both Hong Kong and Greater China.

The Singapore-based company controlled by state-owned Temasek, is said to be looking to raise around S$1.6 billion ($1.3 billion) from the IPO of Mapletree Greater China Commercial Trust (MGCCT, with the REIT slated to go public on March 7.

According to the offering’s prospectus, MGCCT will initially own two privately held properties; Festival Walk in Hong Kong where Apple opened its first store in the Kowloon area last September, and Gateway Plaza, a 25-storey retail mall and office block in Beijing.

It will then add to the portfolio by acquiring income-producing properties in Hong Kong and mainland China both in the ‘first tier’ cities’ of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen as well as second tier cities such as Chengdu, Chongqing, Foshan, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Suzhou, Tianjin, Wuhan and Xi’an.

There are 15 cornerstone investors. As well as Morgan Stanley and Norges Bank, shareholders will include CBRE Clarion Securities, Henderson Global Investors, and Newton Investment Management.

Mapletree, which manages both private equity real estate funds and REITs, is hoping to emulate the success of other recent IPOs – all of which have taken place on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

It listed the Mapletree Logistics Trust in July 2005 which has since grown ten times the size to around S$4.1 billion of assets comprising 110 logistics centres in Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam. In 2010, the firm also launched the Mapletree Industrial Trust, which became the largest REIT IPO in Singapore’s history at the time.