Frasers Centrepoint Trust (FCT)—controlled by Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi—has agreed to sell a suburban shopping mall in Singapore for S$338 million ($250 million), helping the real estate investment trust deleverage amid soaring interest rates.
The sale of Changi City Point in the eastern Singapore town of Bedok to an unidentified third party is expected to be completed by November 15, the company said in a statement. “This divestment is part of our strategic portfolio review to strengthen FCT’s portfolio resilience,” said Richard Ng, CEO of Frasers Centrepoint Asset Management, the manager of FCT.
Upon completion of the divestment, FCT said it will reduce its aggregate leverage to 37.1% from 40.2% as of end-June, strengthen its financial position and lower the company’s average borrowing costs.
The sale of Changi City Point comes on the heels of the acquisition by FCT and its parent Frasers Property of NEX, a shopping mall in the northeast Singapore town of Serangoon, for S$625.5 million in January. Besides NEX, the REIT also has interests in eight other suburban shopping malls and an office building in the city-state.
Charoen, 79, took control of Frasers Property—which owns residential, commercial, retail, logistics and hospitality assets across Australia, China, Europe and Southeast Asia—following his takeover of Fraser & Neave in 2013. He is also the controlling shareholder of Chang beer maker Thai Beverages and Bangkok-based hotel developer Asset World Corp. With a net worth of $13.6 billion, the self-made billionaire was ranked No. 3 when the list of Thailand’s 50 Richest was published in July this year.