APPLE is on an expansion trail in Singapore. It is said to have inked a lease for 35,000 square feet of space spanning two floors at CapitaGreen along Market Street, with options to take up even more space in the building.
The lease was signed late last year, probably at around S$11-12 psf monthly rent.
BT understands the iconic technology giant will occupy levels 29 and 30 of the 40-storey Grade A development, which received Temporary Occupation Permit last December. Apple is also said to have options to lease another three adjoining floors.
Apple is expected to move its sales and marketing staff to CapitaGreen later this year. The group's Singapore operations are based in two neighbouring buildings in Ang Mo Kio. Apple occupies a built-to-suit facility at 7 Ang Mo Kio Street 64 on a 30-year lease term that is due for expiry next year, although there is an option for renewal, industry players suggest. Among the functions located in the sprawling facility are research and development, and sales and marketing.
To cope with its growing business activities in Singapore, which is also a regional headquarter for some functions, Apple expanded to the next-door UE BizHub Central in 2012, where it has leased a couple of floors in one wing of the development. Apple Campus is located within this space.
The IT giant remains on the lookout for space for a flagship retail outlet in Orchard Road, BT understands.
CBRE is understood to have brokered Apple's office lease at CapitaGreen.
The Apple space is likely to have been part of the 69.3 per cent committed occupancy rate for the building's 702,000 sq ft net lettable area as at the end of last year, as revealed by CapitaCommercial Trust (CCT) at its FY2014 results briefing in January.
CCT, which developed the project jointly with CapitaLand and Mitsubishi Estate Asia, also revealed at the time that committed monthly rents at CapitaGreen ranged from S$9.80 psf to S$16 psf for leases inked in the fourth quarter of 2014.
The list of tenants in the building revealed by CCT includes Cargill, Bordier & Cie (Singapore), Jardine Lloyd Thompson, Jones Day, Fitness First and Catlin Asia Pacific. "The committed tenants are from diverse business sectors including financial services, insurance, commodities, legal, technology, real estate, health and fitness, and food and beverage," CCT noted in its FY2014 results presentation.
Built on the former Market Street Carpark site, CapitaGreen has been awarded the Green Mark Platinum Award in 2012 and Universal Design GoldPLUS in 2013 by the Building and Construction Authority.
Over half of the perimeter of the building's façade is covered by living plants. This energy-efficient double-skin façade comprising a primary curtain wall of glass and secondary layer of teeming planters cuts solar heat gain by up to 26 per cent.
CapitaGreen also has terrace gardens on the fifth, 14th and 26th floors, in addition to a Sky Forest atop the skyscraper marked by a distinctive crown of tropical trees and a sculptural petalled funnel.
Cushman & Wakefield director of research, Christine Li, observed that the "presence of the technology sector has become more evident in Singapore's CBD as they are seen snapping up Grade A office space downtown". Last year, technology companies accounted for about 15 per cent of office demand, as compared to a market share of 6 per cent in 2013. In absolute terms, the amount of space tech firms occupied has nearly doubled from 160,000 sq ft to 300,000 sq ft, according to the firm's research.
"Moving forward, technology companies will increasingly be at the forefront of the office leasing scene. The pace of growth by technology companies could continue to surpass that of the financial, insurance and real estate sectors, which have traditionally been the primary sectors driving Grade A office demand," added Ms Li.
Source: Business Times, 4 Mar 2015