Singapore-based Mapletree Logistics Trust (MLT), a subsidiary of Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings, has acquired a set of five Singapore warehouses from CWT International, a unit of the embattled Chinese conglomerate HNA Group.
The Group last week lost its co-founder and chairman Wang Jian, who died from injuries sustained after falling 15 metres onto rocks in the city of Bonnieux while posing for a photograph during a
visit to France, local police said. Mr Wang, who was one of the driving forces behind the massive expansion of HNA Group, had a stake of under 15% in the group. With co-founder Chen Feng, he
transformed a regional airline based in China’s island province of Hainan into a conglomerate with US$230 billion in assets.
The five properties, which Mapletree bought for S$730 million (US$535 million) are warehouses located in three well-situated clusters in Singapore.
HNA had acquired the warehouses last December as part of its US$1.4 billion acquisition of logistics and commodities company CWT Group.
MLT becomes one of the top warehouse space providers in Singapore
The HNA unit is now selling the 3.2 million square feet (297,000 square metres) of warehouse space at a 3.3% discount to their valuation, as HNA Group continues to unwind acquisitions that has saddled it with some US$100 billion in debt.
MLT chief executive Ng Kiat said the acquisition will strengthen the company's position as "one of the largest warehouse space providers in Singapore."
"Total gross floor area in MLT Singapore's portfolio will increase by almost 20% to over 20 million square feet, allowing us to benefit from Singapore's continued growth as a global logistics hub," he added.
After the acquisition, which is scheduled for completion by September, CWT will become Mapletree's top tenant, with a gross revenue contribution of about 9.5%. The acquisition, on a sale-and-leaseback arrangement for terms ranging from five to 10 years, is still subject to approvals from Jurong Town Corporation (JTC) and HNA, the shareholders of CWT International
Changes of ownership within the Hainan Group
Mapletree operates as a real estate developer and private equity firm and provides real estate investment management services. Mapletree owns and manages S$38.6 billion (US$26.6 billion) of office, retail, logistics, industrial, residential, corporate housing and serviced apartments, and student housing properties. It currently owns a diversified portfolio of warehouses in Singapore, Japan, China, South Korea, Vietnam, Australia, and Hong Kong.
Meanwhile, Air Transport World last month reported that HNA Group unit Hainan Airlines Holding has unveiled further details of its assets restructuring plan, which include plans to purchase several stakes from its parent, including 61% of HNA Technic;60% of HNA Aviation; 100% of Sky Plumage; 60% of West Holding; and 30% of West Air, for a total of CNY10.5 billion (US$1.6 billion).
The ATW report said that according to the filing, the restructuring may change the controlling ownership of Hainan Airlines Holding into the Hainan Cihang Charity Foundation. Currently, Grand China Air is the largest shareholder with a 24.3% stake; HNA Group is the fourth biggest shareholder with a 3.5% stake.
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