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CapitaLand Malaysia has strong first quarter

New income from Tropicana City Mall and higher contributions from Gurney Plaza and East Coast Mall, CapitaLand Malaysia Mall REIT Management (CMRM) have propelled reported property income growth of 13.1 per cent for the first quarter.

Tropicana City Mall and Tropicana City Office Tower were acquired in July last year.

CMRM, which manages CapitaLand Mall Trust (CMMT), says its net property income for the period was RM60.6 million (US$15.57 million), compared with RM53.6 million for the corresponding period the previous year.

“Despite the challenging global economic environment, the Malaysian economy is forecast to grow 4 per cent to 4.5 per cent this year,” says CMRM chairman David Wong. “We expect consumer and business sentiments to remain cautious throughout the year as concerns over rising costs of living persist.”

He says headwinds are also likely from intensifying competition as more retail space is scheduled for completion this year. However, the group is confident its portfolio of malls will continue to be resilient.

Tropicana City Mall and the office tower accounted for 12.7 per cent of the group’s net property income, says CEO Low Peck Chen. This was also boosted by higher rates from new and renewed leases at Gurney Plaza and East Coast Mall.

Despite the temporary impact of Mass Rapid Transit construction works on shopper traffic at Sungei Wang Plaza, the stable performance of other malls in the company’s diversified portfolio will help to cushion the effect, she says.

“At Tropicana City Mall we embarked on asset-enhancement works, including the addition of a retail area on the ground floor next to the office tower.”

Reconfiguration works will also create retail areas on Basement 1 and Level 7 later this year.

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