CDL sells more units here in first quarter but sales value falls

Project completion for the Forest Woods condominium remains on schedule. PHOTO: CDL

Property developer City Developments Limited (CDL) and its joint-venture associates sold 185 units with a total sales value of $278.1 million for its first quarter ended March 31, versus 173 units with sales value of $516.3 million a year ago.

The lower sales value was due to a majority of the residential units sold being mass-and mid-market projects like Whistler Grand, Piermont Grand and The Tapestry, it said in a business update yesterday.

In contrast, it sold units mainly from ultra-luxury projects such as Boulevard 88 in the first quarter a year ago.

The firm said it expects its sales volume to decline during the circuit breaker period.

Construction work for its Singapore developments has also been affected. But the temporary occupation permits for the majority of these projects are expected only in 2022 and 2023. The Forest Woods condominium in Lorong Lew Lian remains on track to be completed by the third quarter of this year.

Outside of Singapore, CDL reported a significant slowdown in new home sales for its projects in China, Britain and Australia.

In addition, its global hospitality portfolio, mainly comprising its wholly owned subsidiary Millennium & Copthorne Hotels, has been “severely impacted by closures following lockdowns imposed by local governments”, CDL said.

As of March 31, about 30 per cent of the group’s 152 hotels globally were temporarily closed.

All 10 of its Singapore hotels remain operational but revenue per available room declined 28.8 per cent due to lower occupancy.

CDL said several of its Singapore hotels are housing those hit by recent events such as Malaysia’s border closure, or have been designated as venues for people returning from abroad to serve stay-home notices. “These initiatives have helped to sustain occupancy rates in Singapore, allowing hotels to maintain a break-even position in April,” it said.

Its Singapore office portfolio had a committed occupancy of 90.9 per cent for the quarter. In retail, about 80 per cent of its 426 tenants in Singapore are not operating due to circuit breaker measures.

For the first quarter, CDL’s net gearing ratio stood at 44 per cent, with cash reserves of $3.3 billion.

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