Its location and redevelopment plans could make the buy worth it.
GuocoLand was unfazed by recent housing market measures after it announced that it bought Casa Meyfort in the East Coast for $319.88m (land rate of $1,580 psf), 6% below the vendor’s asking price of $340m.
The land rate is 3-4% higher than prices paid for other freehold properties in the vicinity, Maybank Kim Eng said. CityDev acquired Amber Park for $1,515 psf, whilst Sustained Land paid $1,539 psf for Parkway Mansion. It is also 23% higher than the land rate of $1,280 psf for leasehold property Katong Park Towers by Bukit Sembawang.
“As the option to purchase was exercised within three weeks of the implementation of the revised measures, it is likely not subjected to the revised Additional Buyer Stamp Duty (ABSD) rates,” said Maybank KE analyst Derrick Heng. “This acquisition will lift its 2019 net gearing by 7bps to 0.76x.”
The redevelopment of Casa Meyfort could potentially yield 300 condominium units. Heng added, “We believe the property has strong locational attributes with unblocked views of the East Coast Park to the south and landed housing estate to the north. It is also within 600m of the Katong Park MRT Station that is due to be completed in 2023.”
Assuming an eventual average selling price (ASP) of $2,350 psf, the deal could result in a development surplus of 2.8 cents per share. “This assumption is reasonable as it is broadly in line with prices achieved at recently launched Amber 45 and at a slight premium to four year old The Meyerise,” Heng said.
With the purchase, GuocoLand effectively raised its exposure to the Singapore residential market with the acquisition of Casa Meyfort. Contributions from this project will be offset by lower market value of GuocoLand Malaysia.
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