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Wee Hur property trust to acquire Sydney property for A$52m

MAINBOARD-LISTED Wee Hur Holdings on Monday evening revealed that Wee Hur PBSA Master Trust, through its wholly owned sub-trust, WH Gibbons Trust, has signed a put and call agreement on the proposed acquisition of a property in Sydney for A$52 million (S$53.13 million). The property developer owns a 69 per cent stake in Wee Hur PBSA Master Trust.

The property – 13-23 Gibbons Street –  is a 32-unit freehold residential block in Redfern with a site area of about 1,365 sq m.

In a filing with the Singapore Exchange, Wee Hur said that it intends to redevelop the property into a purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA), which can hold about 515 beds.

Following redevelopment, the plot will consist of an 18-storey building with two podium levels and 16 levels of student accommodation and will consist of studios and cluster bedrooms and a small retail tenancy on the ground level, among others.

The Gibbons Street property is located in the vicinity of University of Sydney and University of Technology Sydney, while the proposed Waterloo Metro Station will be about 300 metres away from the property.

The move by the property group is in line with its strategy to venture into Australian-focused student residences and will be its fourth such residence.

Its first – in Brisbane – would be ready for use by students in July 2018 while its Adelaide accommodation is expected to be completed by early 2019 and its Melbourne equivalent would be completed by 2020, Wee Hur said.

“If the acquisition of the property in Sydney is successful and the PBSA redevelopment plan is approved, the total number of PBSA beds in major cities of Australia in the pipeline under the Wee Hur PBSA Master Trust can reach approximately 3,765,” it added.

Goh Yeow Lian, executive chairman, Wee Hur, said: “We are very pleased to find this acquisition opportunity in Sydney as we wanted very much to have a PBSA in this city. We find this site attractive as it is close to two universities, the University of Sydney and University of Technology Sydney, and also close to railway train and metro stations.”

Wee Hur shares last traded on May 30 at S$0.235.

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