Blackstone Said to Explore Sale of Singapore BuildingPooja Thakur and Bei Hu
Blackstone Group LP, the world’s largest alternative-asset manager, is considering the sale of an industrial building in Singapore it bought two years ago, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.
StarHub Green, whose anchor tenant is StarHub Ltd., Singapore’s biggest broadband Internet and cable TV operator, may be put up for sale, said the person, who asked not to be named as the discussions are private. The New York-based firm is considering the sale as StarHub extended its lease recently, helping boost the value of the property, the person said.
Blackstone acquired the building in an industrial area in 2012 for S$215 million ($168 million), the person said. Other tenants in the building, formerly owned by SEB Asset Management AG, a European real estate fund manager, include engineering services company Boustead Singapore Ltd. and Quest Laboratories Pte, the largest independent non-hospital based laboratory in the island-state.
Charlotte Bilney of the public relations firm Citigate Dewe Rogerson in Hong Kong declined to comment on behalf of Blackstone.
Rents at industrial properties rose 5 percent in the quarter ended Dec. 31 from a year ago, data compiled by JTC Corp., a Singapore industrial infrastructure specialist, showed. Rentals of multiple-user factory and warehouse space increased by 3.5 percent and 5.4 percent respectively from a year ago, the data showed.
StarHub renewed its lease at the building for another 10 years, PERE, a magazine that specializes in private-equity real estate deals, reported last month without saying where it obtained the information. The lease was renewed at a monthly rent of about S$3.60 a square foot, the publication said. StarHub occupies 220,000 square feet in the 405,000 square foot-building, it said.
Blackstone said in October it will seek more investments in Southeast Asia following the opening of an office in Singapore seven years after entering the Asia-Pacific region.
The company’s property acquisitions in Asia last year ranged from Chinese shopping malls to Australian office towers. Since making its first deal in the region in 2007, Blackstone has invested $7 billion in about 30 transactions, including $3 billion of equity, according to the firm.