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UMLand 4Q net profit up 103%

KUALA LUMPUR: United Malayan Land Bhd's (UMLand) net profit for its fourth quarter (4Q2010) recorded an increase of 103% to RM26 million, compared to RM12.8 million in 3Q2010.

According to a statement released on Monday, Feb 28, the group recorded revenues of RM316.9 million and net earnings of RM51.6 million for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2010. This represents an increase of 52% for revenues and a dip of 6% for net profit over the preceding year.

UMLand group CEO Pee Tong Lim said: "The group's revenues for the FY2010 were well supported by both our township and niche divisions. The 30% upside in revenues was achieved at the back of higher profit contributions from property sales in Bandar Seri Austin and Bandar Seri Putra townships as well as our niche development, Suasana Bangsar which has completed and will be handed over to purchasers in March. In addition, we are very excited with the prospects of Susana Bukit Ceylon. Since its sales preview last November, Suasana Bukit Ceylon has enjoyed promising take up rates and we expect this momentum to sustain."

Suasana Bukit Ceylon, which was soft launched on Feb 25 and has a gross development value (GDV) of above RM300 million, is an exclusive and high-end high rise development project comprising 310 units of service apartment located within the Bukit Ceylon enclave in Kuala Lumpur city.

Meanwhile, Suasana Bangsar — which is a niche development — has recently been completed, and is now ready for the handing over of keys to its owners in March 2011. Suasana Bangsar is a freehold condominium project comprising 190 units of condominiums with a GDV of RM198 million.

"We are optimistic that the niche division will continue to complement the group's revenue stream generated from the township division. We also believe that as part of the group's growth strategy, we will continue to engage with strategic joint venture partners for viable projects in the future. Our joint venture project with UEM Land Bhd at Puteri Harbour, Nusajaya is fast taking shape. The development of boutique apartments complemented by retail components located strategically at the Puteri Harbour integrated waterfront and marina development is well underway and we expect to launch these apartments within the first half of 2011," Pee added.

As part of the strategy to enhance earnings from the Puteri Harbour Project, the joint venture has decided to tie up with a prominent investor for the take-up of the entire retail podium located below the boutique apartments. This sale, involving a total gross retail area of 68,000 square feet, is valued at RM46.8 million and the Sale and Purchase Agreement was signed on Monday.

The investor will operate and manage the entire marina facility retail operations in the precinct which will also feature an Indoor Theme Park and Traders Hotel components to prominent investor at Puteri Harbour, Nusajaya by Shangri-La, he said.

In addition, back in December 2010, the joint venture had purchased a second parcel of commercial land at Puteri Harbour for the development of a business and residential hub. This mixed development is envisioned to be the pulse of activities in Puteri Harbour, with a range of F&B and retail outlets overlooking the lagoon and string of activities being held along the promenade.

In the pipeline, the group intends to further expand its niche division with upcoming projects which includes a commercial development within the Johor Bahru CBD in the vicinity of CIQ Complex. The group expects to maintain its performance this financial year amid a stable outlook for the property sector.

Meanwhile, the group's new launches for financial year 2011 are expected to generate total GDV of over half a billion.

UMLand is recommending a final gross dividend of 5.15 sen per share.

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