CapitaLand’s acquisition of Ascendas-Singbridge gets shareholders’ nod

Lee Chee Koon sharing the strategic benefits of the acquisition of the business of Ascendas-Singbridge at the EGM. Photo from CapitaLand.

Independent shareholders have voted in favor of CapitaLand‘s proposed S$11 billion ($8 billion) acquisition of Ascendas-Singbridge (ASB), a deal that would create the largest diversified real estate group in Asia.

At an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) held at The Star Vista on Friday, 99.17 per cent of CapitaLand’s independent shareholders voted in favor of the proposed transaction. Over 2,000 CapitaLand shareholders and proxies attended the EGM.

Under the terms of the proposed acquisition, Temasek will receive S$6 billion, which will be satisfied 50 per cent in cash (S$3 billion) and 50 per cent in new CapitaLand shares (S$3 billion). Post transaction, Temasek’s ownership of CapitaLand will increase from approximately 40.7 per cent to about 51 per cent.

“The transaction will strengthen and position us for the future. With the combined entity, we will be able to attract the best people. We will also have a lot more access to capital partners, markets and asset classes,” said CapitaLand Group President and CEO Lee Chee Koon.

Ascendas-Singbridge manages three listed trusts, Ascendas Reit, Singapore’s first industrial and business space trust; Ascendas India Trust, the first Indian property trust in Asia; and Ascendas Hospitality Trust, which has a portfolio of 14 hotels in Australia, Korea, Japan, and Singapore.

Post transaction, the combined total assets under management (AUM) of the group will be S$123.4 billion. The group’s asset classes will include logistics/business parks, industrial, lodging, commercial, retail and residential with geographical presence spanning over 180 cities across 32 countries.

Ascendas-Singbridge’s flagship projects include Singapore Science Park and Changi Business Park in Singapore, International Tech Park Bangalore and International Tech Park Chennai in India, as well as Dalian Ascendas IT Park and Singapore Hangzhou Science and Tech Park in China.

Amid growing interest in Asian real estate investment space, the current deal is one among a series of announcement from real estate funds to float multi-asset or niche platforms. For exposures in the Asian realty space, the investors are not shying away to forge partnerships even though they might seem to be competitors.

Last year Ascendas-Singbridge and Temasek came together for a real estate platform Ascendas India Logistics Programme in which Temasek came as a principal investor. Together both committed about $300 million to invest in logistics and industrial real estate in key locations in India.

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