CapitaLand completes purchase of Chinese mall from PGIM Real Estate for $511m

Twilight view of the Canton Tower in Guangzhou.

Singaporean property developer CapitaLand has completed the purchase of Rock Square, a retail asset located in China’s Guangzhou region, for a consideration of $511 million from PGIM Real Estate, according to a press release.

PGIM Real Estate is part of PGIM, the $1 trillion global investment management businesses of NYSE-listed Prudential Financial, Inc.

CapitaLand has been growing its footprint in China and announced the transaction in November 2017.

CapitaLand Mall Asia and CapitaLand Retail China Trust (CRCT) partnered to buy the shopping mall for RMB 3.36 billion ($511 million), with CRCT taking a 51 per cent stake in the special purpose vehicle that owns Rock Square, while CapitaLand Mall Asia will hold the remaining 49 per cent.

Rock Square is a five-storeyed, multi-anchor regional mall located in Guangzhou’s Haizhu district, a middle-class residential neighbourhood. It comprises 83,591 sq m of retail space and sits above the interchange station of Guangzhou Subway Line 1 and Foshan Express Line.

Rock Square was largely vacant when PGIM Real Estate acquired the property in 2012 for a reported RMB 2 billion and opened it in Q2 2013. Over time, the company successfully leased the mall to a wide range of domestic and international tenants including Aeon, Zara, Uniqlo, Stradivarius, and Pull & Bear. It is currently 96.3 per cent leased.

The acquisition marks CapitaLand’s second mall in Guangzhou and CRCT’s first. It has also boosted the Singapore-listed CRCT’s portfolio by 28 per cent. CRCT already maintains a portfolio of 10 income-producing malls in seven Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai.

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