The strong performance from the Group’s property development segment for Q2 2018 was powered mainly by three projects ― New Futura and Gramercy Park in Singapore, and Hong Leong City Center (HLCC) in Suzhou, China. This segment also included profits from the Group’s joint venture (JV) development Park Court Aoyama The Tower in Tokyo, Japan. The Criterion Executive Condominium (EC), which is now fully sold, achieved its Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) in Q1 2018 and boosted revenue for 1H 2018.
The Group’s balance sheet remains robust. As at 30 June 2018, the net gearing ratio of the Group increased to 19%, following the full payment of the recent Singapore land sites acquired. Interest cover remains strong at 18.4 times to weather any risks of impending rate hikes.
The CDL Board is pleased to declare payment of a tax-exempt (one-tier) special interim dividend of 6.0 cents per ordinary share.
Mr Kwek Leng Beng, CDL Executive Chairman, said, “We had two quarters of strong residential sales in Singapore, but market dynamics changed after the unexpectedly harsh property cooling measures were announced in July. Sales are expected to moderate though prices may be sustained for very few quality projects in good locations where there is limited supply and pent-up demand. Having navigated various property cooling measures over the years, we have seen that sentiment and timing are critical. As our land bank was bought relatively early before prices rose further, this gives us more flexibility for the commencement of construction and sales launches. Our investment horizon remains long-term and we will continue to adopt a disciplined approach to maximise returns for shareholders.”
Mr Sherman Kwek, CDL Group Chief Executive Officer, said, “For the Singapore residential market, CDL has a strategically acquired land bank that caters to all segments of the market such as EC, mass, mid and high-end. It is spread across the island from the east to the central and the west. Our globally diversified portfolio of residential developments and recurring income properties also enables us to weather headwinds that impact specific asset classes or markets. We remain focused on growing our recurring income significantly over the next 10 years through strategic acquisitions, investments and asset enhancements. We have also put in place a new integrated organisational structure which increases synergy and innovation, and appointed senior executives to drive fund management, asset management and property development. By strengthening our leadership bench and capabilities, CDL is well-poised for our next phase of growth.”
For more details, view the webcast of the CDL 1H 2018 Results Briefing.
CDL’s Inaugural Share Buyback Exercise
CDL has embarked on its inaugural share buyback exercise by way of purchases in the open market. In accordance with CDL’s Share Purchase Mandate which was renewed at its 55th Annual General Meeting on 25 April 2018, the Company has bought back 300,000 shares at an average price of S$9.485 as of 16 August. This is a discount of 14.8% to Net Asset Value per share of S$11.13 as of 30 June, and represents approximately 0.03% of CDL’s issued share capital (prior to the share buyback). The purchased shares will be held as treasury shares and a portion of it may be deployed for the Company’s Long-Term Incentive Plans.
Further details on the share buybacks can be found in the Company’s Daily Share Buy-back Notice(s).
“There is deep value in our shares and we have confidence in CDL’s strong fundamentals and future growth potential. We have repositioned our business for the next lap, with a focus on growth, enhancement and transformation. Our robust balance sheet enables us to initiate our share buyback exercise to enhance returns for shareholders. We will continue to seek investments for CDL, capitalising on both internal and external opportunities.”
Mr Sherman Kwek
CDL Group Chief Executive Officer
Driving Synergies Through New Senior Appointments
CDL has appointed real estate industry veteran Ms Yvonne Ong as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Commercial, with effect from 6 June 2018. Ms Ong leads the Asset Management Division, which is part of CDL’s new organisational structure to foster multidisciplinary collaboration and enhance synergies. The Division comprises all departments involved in Investment Properties, namely Leasing, Property & Facilities Management and Customer Service. Ms Ong will spearhead asset management strategies to drive the performance of CDL’s global portfolio of office, retail, industrial and residential leased assets.
Under its new organisational structure, CDL has also created a Property Development Division that consolidates all departments involved in the development of CDL’s Singapore properties, namely Projects, Sales & Marketing, Customer Service and Property & Facilities Management. This Division is responsible for the entire life-span of a development project, from advising on land tenders to innovating project design, managing the construction phase, and providing after-sales service. With effect from 1 June 2018, Ms Lee Mei Ling, who was CDL’s Senior Vice President, Head of Sales & Marketing, was promoted to Executive Vice President, Head of Property Development.
Both Divisions report to Mr Chia Ngiang Hong, CDL Group General Manager.
As part of its new organisational structure, CDL announced two new senior appointments
for its core businesses of asset management and property development: (left) Ms Yvonne Ong,
Chief Executive Officer, Commercial and (right) Ms Lee Mei Ling, Executive Vice President &
Head, Property Development.