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First Sponsor turns in Q1 FY15 profit, acquires two hotels in Amsterdam

MAINBOARD-LISTED property group First Sponsor swung into the black for the first quarter of 2015 with a net profit of S$10.73 million, compared to a loss of S$9.18 million in the corresponding quarter a year ago, driven by continued growth in its property financing business.

Revenue surged 70.5 per cent year on year to S$12.65 million due to higher revenue from property financing, while earnings per share for the quarter come to 1.82 Singapore cents, versus a loss per share of 3.16 Singapore cents previously. During the quarter, its property financing business reaped revenues of S$8.72 million, surging from S$3.04 million a year ago, on the back of higher interest income generated from secured entrusted loans to third parties due to a larger average loan portfolio.

In a separate announcement, the group said it has entered into a sale and purchase agreement with a German institutional real estate fund, IVG Institutional Funds, to acquire two hotels - a Holiday Inn and a Holiday Inn Express - with 509 carpark lots in Amsterdam for 54.6 million euros (S$78.8 million). This comes with an expected net rental yield of 7.2 per cent. The hotels and 440 carpark lots have been leased to a lessee under a master lease arrangement for 25 years starting May last year.

The remaining 69 parking lots have been leased to another lessee for 10 years from August 2012.

"The group's expansion into the Dutch investment property market is expected to boost recurring income from its quality property holding assets and diversify the group's income base," it said in a release.

The acquisition is slated for completion in mid-June.

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