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Keppel Corp confirms news of joint efforts with KBS to list US commercial Reit

KEPPEL Corporation confirmed that efforts are ongoing to carry out an initial public offering and listing of a US commercial real estate investment trust (Reit) on the Singapore bourse.

This Reit will be jointly sponsored by its asset-management arm, Keppel Capital, and KBS Pacific Advisors Pte Ltd, it said on Thursday in response to an article in The Business Times on the planned listing.

"A listing application to the SGX-ST and various applications to the Monetary Authority of Singapore have been submitted in connection with the IPO and these applications are currently under review," it added.

"The details of the terms of the IPO are still being finalised and the proposed establishment and listing of the Reit will be subject to, among other things, market conditions, the relevant regulatory and other approvals being obtained and the execution of definitive agreements by the relevant parties."

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An initial portfolio of 11 office assets will be injected into the Reit by a fund managed by KBS Capital Advisors LLC.

The BT article said these freehold offices worth US$820 million are located in Seattle, Sacramento, Denver, Austin, Houston, Orlando and Atlanta.

The Reit listing is expected to raise around US$500 million and could offer an investment yield of close to 7 per cent, based on a Wall Street Journal report.

If this Reit listing goes through, it will mark the second pure US Reit listing in Singapore following the successful listing of Manulife US Reit by Canadian insurer Manulife Financial Corp that raised US$470 million in May last year.