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Mapletree partners major Chinese courier group SF Express

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Mapletree Investments has entered into a cooperation pact with Chinese courier group SF Express to establish a long-term strategic partnership to collaborate in logistics networks.

Singapore

MAPLETREE Investments has entered into a cooperation pact with Chinese courier group SF Express to establish a long-term strategic partnership to collaborate in logistics networks.

The official signing of a cooperation framework agreement between both parties took place last Tuesday.

Mapletree's logistics business has a global footprint in the key countries, including China, where it currently has logistics properties spread across more than 20 cities.

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The Temasek unit said it is expanding its presence to cover more areas within China.

In this strategic partnership, Mapletree will provide quality solutions, and customisation of warehouse facilities to meet SF's business requirements.

This partnership is coming at a time when SF Express, the second-largest courier company in China after China Post, is aggressively expanding its overseas business. Listed in China's A-share market under SF Holding, SF Express currently has a fleet of 57 aircraft to service millions of packages daily. It has also ventured overseas, providing courier services to 53 countries.

David Zheng, head of General Affairs Centre at SF Express, said: "The good experiences while working with Mapletree on recent projects, as well as the strong support that Mapletree can provide with their established expertise in developing, managing and operating logistics facilities, prompted us to continue the strategic partnership."

He added: "This will provide assurance to our business expansion, as well as ensuring our customers with quality services."

Lee Ark Boon, Mapletree chief executive officer for logistics development in China, noted that recent joint projects with SF Express have shown win-win results for both parties and that Mapletree aims to provide customers with "an edge in the competitive logistics industry".

"We are also hopeful in broadening the cooperation scope, to leverage on Mapletree's global resources and networks to support SF's expansion plans," he noted.

China is an attractive logistics market underpinned by favourable underlying fundamentals. Last Thursday, Singapore-listed Mapletree Logistics Trust (MLT) and its sponsor Mapletree Investments jointly acquired 11 new Grade A logistics properties in China, which has a strong tenant base hailing from e-commerce-related sectors, including major express delivery companies like SF Express.

The acquisition price for MLT's 50 per cent stake in the portfolio of 11 properties was 985.3 million yuan (S$205.3 million). The portfolio doubled MLT's net lettable space in China to 8.8 million square feet and increase its e-commerce revenue exposure in China from 18 per cent to 42 per cent.