hsbc building

HSBC’s Hong Kong headquarters may have some empty space soon

In today’s roundup of regional news headlines, global bank HSBC makes plans to shrink its property footprint by 40 percent, India’s Embassy REIT eyes a $40 million debt issue, and German supermarket chain Metro announces a pull-out from Japan.

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HSBC to Cut Office Space 40%, Trim Travel

HSBC Holdings is not about to throw away its pandemic-era ways of working.

The bank, which is in the midst of a historic pivot and cost-cutting programme, predicts it will be operating in a profoundly different way after the coronavirus outbreak ebbs, with as many as 70 percent of its staff backing a hybrid working model and with its business travel budget cut in half. Read more>>

Embassy REIT to Raise up to $40M via Debentures

Embassy Office Parks REIT will raise up to INR 300 crore ($40 million) through issue of non-convertible debentures. The company did not disclose where the funds will be utilised.

In a regulatory filing, the company said the board of Embassy Office Parks Management Services Pvt Ltd, the manager of Embassy Office Parks REIT, had last November approved the raising of debt, including the issue of non-convertible debentures, for an aggregate amount up to INR 3,641.1 crore in one or more tranches. Read more>>

Germany’s Metro to Withdraw From Japan

The German supermarket chain Metro is set to cease its Japanese operations by the end of next month after failing to reach profit targets and sales growth.

Metro AG’s exit will see the closure of 10 stores and the business in Japan, while the real estate portfolio in the country will be sold. The company said in its statement that it had analysed alternative options, including adjusting store formats, improving the assortment and expanding the delivery business, but saw no path to profitable growth. Read more>>

Troubled SG Contractor Greatearth Files to Wind Up Company

Troubled construction company Greatearth has started the process of winding up, a week after its shock closure of five build-to-order project sites caused more than 2,900 homebuyers to face longer delays.

Goh Eng Hwee, the director of Greatearth Corporation and Greatearth Construction, has filed a statutory declaration of the company’s inability to continue business. Read more>>

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Nine Singapore Villas on the Market for $74.5M

Singapore conglomerate Wywy Group is selling its portfolio of nine villas at Oei Tiong Ham Park Residences with a guide price of between S$8 million and S$13 million per unit, or about S$100 million ($74.5 million) collectively, marketing agent CBRE said Thursday.

The freehold luxury development comprises three three-storey-plus-rooftop blocks, with an apartment occupying each storey. Read more>>

Henderson Land Says Kai Tak Homes 7.5 Times Oversubscribed

The first batch of flats at The Henley III in Hong Kong’s Kai Tak was 7.5 times oversubscribed as of 3pm Thursday, with Henderson Land Development receiving 850 checks for the 100 units offered on Saturday.

Thomas Lam, general manager of the sales department at Henderson Land, voiced confidence in receiving 1,000 checks before the deadline of 8pm Friday night because of the low price of this batch — there are 83 units with a discounted price of less than HK$10 million ($1.3 million) — and the developer may launch the second round of sales next week. Read more>>

Singapore Agents’ Residential Transaction Data Made Public

The Council for Estate Agencies has published a complete record of all residential property transactions facilitated in the last 24 months by property agents in Singapore.

Prospective buyers and sellers can now view the publicly accessible information on both resale and rental deals of Housing and Development Board flats, as well as new sales, resales and rentals of private homes. Read more>>

Alibaba to Invest $15.5B in ‘Common Prosperity’

China’s Alibaba Group will invest RMB 100 billion ($15.5 billion) by 2025 in support of “common prosperity”, it said, becoming the latest corporate giant to pledge support for the initiative driven by President Xi Jinping.

Beijing has been encouraging companies to share wealth as part of the effort to ease inequality in the world’s second-largest economy. Other companies that have made similar announcements include Tencent Holdings, which also pledged RMB 100 billion, and Geely Automobile. Read more>>

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