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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.

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"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.