Developer SingHaiyi Group and its joint venture (JV) partners - Suntec Reit and Haiyi Holdings - announced on Wednesday (April 17) that UBS Singapore has signed on to take up all the office space at the redeveloped Park Mall building.
The move confirms an earlier report by The Business Times report on April 1 that UBS was mulling over a consolidation of its Singapore office footprint.
Located at 9 Penang Road, the property is now undergoing redevelopment, which is on track to be completed in the fourth quarter this year, SingHaiyi said in an exchange filing.
UBS Singapore will take up 381,000 sq ft of net lettable area, spanning eight levels across two towers, and plans to move to the 10-storey Grade A office building in the second half of 2020.
Besides UBS Singapore, the new building has also garnered "strong interest" from potential retail tenants including food and beverage outlets, and ancillary services, SingHaiyi added.
Haiyi Holdings is a wholly owned entity of the group's major shareholders, SingHaiyi's group managing director Celine Tang, and her husband, Gordon Tang.
SingHaiyi Group and Haiyi Holdings each hold a 35 per cent stake in the JV, while Suntec Reit owns the remaining 30 per cent.
The new building is located near Singapore's prime shopping belt Orchard Road and Dhoby Ghaut MRT station. It also has 15,000 sq ft of retail space, and an extended 99-year leasehold which will expire on Dec 7, 2115.
Said Mrs Tang: "9 Penang Road marks SingHaiyi's first foray into commercial property redevelopment, and a strategic springboard to expand our brand and track record in commercial and retail property development."
Separately, UBS Singapore's country head, August Hatecke, noted that the move will allow UBS Singapore to bring its employees working at One Raffles Quay and Suntec City under one roof to enhance collaboration, as well as offer new capacity for future growth in the Asia-Pacific region.
UBS has close to 4,000 employees in Singapore across its businesses, and the new premises will also be home to UBS University, which will lead training and development programmes for its staff across the region.
In a circular sent out to its employees on Wednesday and seen by BT, UBS noted that Singapore is a "strategic priority" of the group, and that the future-ready workplace with the latest connectivity and health facilities will offer an "ideal environment" to enhance the way its staff work and collaborate.
"As sole tenant, UBS Singapore will have full control of building security, which will feature a single-entry system including facial recognition technology."
It added that the new building's energy-efficient construction will also help the group operate in line with the highest environmental standards.
At 4.21pm, SingHaiyi shares were trading flat at 9.5 cents, while units in Suntec Reit were trading unchanged at $1.90.
Source: Straits Times, 17 April 2019