15 November 2019

Property and Construction

  • Some homebuyers in Shenzhen are required to pay the luxury home tax even if they only buy a tiny apartment with an area of 35 square meters. Photo: Reuters

    Shenzhen eases tax rule on luxury homes

    - Nov 13, 2019 1:20pm
    Shenzhen’s housing and construction bureau announced on Monday that all residential apartments smaller than 144 square meters in the southern city will be exempted from the luxury home tax. The move is expected to boost the...
  • WeWork's former chief executive Adam Neumann has received a  US$1.7 billion exit package. Photo: Reuters

    WeWork’s Neumann, SoftBank’s Son sued over botched IPO

    Nov 11, 2019 7:38am
    WeWork officials, including co-founder and former chief executive Adam Neumann, are being sued by minority shareholders to recoup losses as the shared workspace provider pulled its initial public offering and saw its value plunge more than...
  • WeWork plans to cut by half its co-working sites in Hong Kong as part of its restructuring moves. Photo: Reuters

    WeWork doesn’t work in Hong Kong

    - Nov 7, 2019 11:52am
    Just how dire the situation is for WeWork right now could be seen in its operations here in Hong Kong, where its business model seemed well-suited given the stratospheric rates of office spaces in the international...
  • WeWork's valuation is estimated to have dropped from US$47 billion or more in August to as little as US$5.9 billion based on terms of a SoftBank lifeline. Photo: Reuters

    WeWork still on life support, must cut costs fast: rivals

    Nov 6, 2019 9:12am
    SoftBank may be rescuing WeWork with a US$9.5 billion cash injection but most rivals say they believe the office space sharing company is still in critical condition. They say for Manhattan-based WeWork to survive it will...
  • Following a deadly shooting incident in California on Halloween night, Airbnb says it is redoubling its efforts to combat unauthorized parties on premises rented through its online platform. Photo: Bloomberg

    Airbnb bans ‘party houses’ after 5 dead in Halloween shooting

    Nov 4, 2019 9:27am
    Airbnb banned “party houses” on Saturday after five people were killed in a shooting at a large Halloween gathering inside a rental home in Northern California that was advertised on the online listing service, Reuters reports....
  • Hong Kong's housing crisis is prompting many young people to consider co-living arrangements. Photo: Bloomberg

    A (tiny) room with a view

    - Oct 28, 2019 1:06pm
    Do you want to live in a unit with Victoria Harbour view? Well, such lodgings are only a dream for most of us, given the sky-high property prices in the city. Yet there is a way...
  • Prologis chairman and CEO Hamid Moghadam said Liberty’s logistics assets are highly complementary to his company's US portfolio. Photo: Bloomberg

    Prologis to buy warehouse rival Liberty in US$12.6 billion deal

    Oct 28, 2019 10:07am
    Warehouse giant Prologis Inc. said it has agreed to acquire rival industrial real-estate business Liberty Property Trust in a US$12.6 billion deal, Reuters reports. If approved, Liberty shareholders would receive 0.675 times a Prologis share for...
  • A co-working space in Beijing. China's biggest operator of such facilities is eyeing a US listing by the end of this year. Photo: Bloomberg

    China co-working space firm Ucommune files for US IPO – report

    Oct 25, 2019 3:34pm
    Ucommune, China’s biggest shared workspace provider, has filed a confidential prospectus with the US securities regulator for a planned initial public offering, Reuters reports, citing sources with knowledge of the matter. A prospectus was lodged with...
  • Hainan province saw  housing sales area, value and property development investment slump after it imposed stringent home purchase restrictions. Photo: Bloomberg

    Several Chinese cities ease housing curbs to stimulate growth

    - Oct 24, 2019 12:14pm
    China’s economic growth slowed to its weakest pace in 27 years in the third quarter. Semi-government think tank China Finance 40 Forum (CF40) suggested that the government should cut interest rates and loosen housing curbs to...
  • Following the cash lifeline from Softbank, there is zero risk of WeWork going bankrupt, the startup's new chairman says. Photo: Reuters

    WeWork’s new chairman defends payouts to founder

    Oct 24, 2019 9:31am
    WeWork’s new Executive Chairman Marcelo Claure on Wednesday defended huge payouts to the office-sharing company’s founder Adam Neumann and said there is now “zero risk of the company going bankrupt,” Reuters reports, citing an audio recording...
  • With property prices having fallen as much as 50 percent in some prime areas, Malaysia offers great bargains, the author says. Photo: Reuters

    Taking advantage of the Malaysian property market downturn

    - Oct 23, 2019 10:04am
    With the recent unrest in Hong Kong, several property markets around the world that once were languishing in doldrums are starting to see signs of life as wealth migrates ahead of people. Malaysia is one such...
  • Adam Neumann could step down from The We Company’s board as part of a deal with SoftBank and become an adviser, a report says. Photo: Reuters

    SoftBank’s WeWork financing would lead to Neumann’s exit: report

    Oct 22, 2019 9:22am
    SoftBank Group offered close to US$10 billion to WeWork owner The We Company, its employees and its investors on Monday under a plan to keep the struggling US office-space sharing firm afloat that would lead to...
  • A logistics real estate developer is re-launching its Hong Kong IPO despite the ongoing unrest in the city. Photo: Bloomberg

    ESR Cayman seeks up to US$1.45 bln in revived HK IPO: report

    Oct 21, 2019 11:08am
    ESR Cayman Ltd, a logistics real estate firm that is backed by private-equity firm Warburg Pincus, aims to raise as much as US$1.45 billion from a revived Hong Kong initial public offering, Reuters reports. ESR, which...
  • Hong Kong’s new property measures, which include eased mortgage rules, have been met with mixed reaction as to their possible consequences. Photo: Bloomberg

    What’s the thinking behind HK’s new housing policy?

    - Oct 18, 2019 12:55pm
    In her third annual policy address (delivered remotely via video telecast, which is a first in the history of the city) on Wednesday, Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor focused on solving the housing crisis...
  • The new mortgage rules, while good news for homebuyers, also prompted many property owners to raise flat prices in anticipation of stronger demand. Photo: HKEJ

    A flat owner’s story

    - Oct 18, 2019 12:19pm
    Not too many landlords were smiling over the past four months in view of the political unrest that has dealt a telling blow to the property business as a whole. Take the case of a certain flat...
  • A Blackstone entity will acquire Bellagio Resorts and Casino and lease it back to MGM under a deal announced on Tuesday. Photo: Bloomberg.

    MGM to sell Bellagio, Circus Circus resorts for about US$5 bln

    Oct 16, 2019 10:04am
    MGM Resorts International said on Tuesday that it will sell its Bellagio and Circus Circus resorts in Las Vegas in separate deals valued at about US$5 billion, Reuters reports. Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust will acquire...
  • WeWork says it is working to remedy the situation after its phone cubicles were found to contain elevated levels of formaldehyde. Photo: Reuters

    WeWork says cancer-causing chemical found in its phone booths

    Oct 15, 2019 9:33am
    Office-sharing startup WeWork has closed about 2,300 phone booths at some of its 223 sites in the United States and Canada after discovering elevated levels of formaldehyde in the cubicles. After a tenant complained of odor...
  • WeWork’s parent The We Company has withdrawn its initial public offering after its potential IPO valuation dropped as low as US$10 billion, from US$47 billion in January. Photo: AFP

    WeWork fiasco offers lessons for Silicon Valley startups

    Oct 4, 2019 9:14am
    The implosion of office space company WeWork this week is being digested as a lesson for Silicon Valley startups – in what not to do. WeWork’s parent The We Company on Monday filed to withdraw its...
  • Wawa Planet has closed a deal to rent a three-storey property on Percival Street in Causeway Bay. Photo: Wawa Planet/Facebook

    A business that thrives even in these dark days

    - Oct 2, 2019 10:52am
    The start of the National Day “Golden Week”, normally a time when mainland tourists pour into Hong Kong’s shopping districts in full force, saw 30 shopping malls and 47 MTR stations shuttered on Tuesday. Instead of...
  • The rating downgrade puts WeWork, which abandoned an initial public offering on Monday, into junk territory. Photo: AFP

    Fitch downgrades WeWork after aborted IPO leaves financing hole

    Oct 2, 2019 9:36am
    Global credit rating agency Fitch Ratings downgraded WeWork’s credit rating by two notches to “CCC+”, putting the SoftBank-backed office-sharing firm deep into junk territory a day after it abandoned an initial public offering, Reuters reports. WeWork,...