Mar 17, 2014

Singapore serviced apartment chain plans expansion into Myanmar

Singaporean serviced apartment chain The Ascott Limited has announced moves to expand into Myanmar and increase its presence in Germany and Asia on Thursday.

The wholly-owned unit of developer CapitaLand said yesterday that it has won a contract to operate a 153-unit mixed-use development in Yangon.

The property - Somerset Kabar Aye Yangon - is a 15-minute drive from downtown Yangon and 30 minutes from the airport. It is due to open in early 2018 and will be Ascott's first outlet in Myanmar.

The firm also announced yesterday that it has won a contract to manage the Somerset Zhuankou Wuhan, in Hubei, China. The 245-unit property is projected to open in 2018 and will comprise commercial and residential components.

The Ascott Sentral Kuala Lumpur, which the firm is managing, will open on March 21 while the Ascott Midtown Suzhou in China should be operating by next month.

These announcements come on the heels of Ascott's opening its first property in Frankfurt, Germany, on March 1.

Acquired for €28 million (US$38.8 million) while under construction in 2011, the 165-unit Citadines City Centre Frankfurt is Ascott's third serviced residence in Germany, adding to those in Berlin and Munich.

Ascott chief executive Lee Chee Koon said the moves are part of the firm's search for investment opportunities in key markets such as China, Germany and South-east Asian capitals.

Started in 1984, the Singapore company now has serviced residences across 83 cities in 23 countries, such as Singapore, Spain and France. It aims to reach its target of 40,000 apartment units worldwide by next year, added Lee.

It is already the world's largest international owner-operator of serviced residences, with about 34,000 units in 231 properties.

Source: The Strait Times