By Staff writer
Fund set up by Qatar Investment Authority and Ascott will invest another $33m to convert Paris building into serviced residence
A fund set up by Qatar Investment Authority and serviced residence firm Ascott, a unit of Singapore's CapitaLand, has acquired two prime properties in Paris and Tokyo for $104 million.
The fund will invest another $33 million to convert the office building in Paris into a luxury serviced residence and embark on asset enhancement to reposition the serviced residence in Tokyo, bringing the total investment to $137 million, a statement said.
The 70-unit Citadines Suites Champs-Élysées Paris is slated to open in 2018 while the serviced residence that has been operating as Somerset Shinagawa Tokyo since acquisition will undergo asset enhancement to reposition the property with additional apartments to be reconfigured. This is expected to be completed by end 2016.
With these acquisitions, Ascott now has more than 43,000 units across 277 properties, spanning 95 cities, the statement added.
Set up in July, the $600 million serviced residence global fund is Ascott’s largest private equity fund and a 50:50 joint venture with QIA. The fund invests in serviced residences and rental housing properties with an initial focus on Asia Pacific and Europe.
Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s CEO, said: “Ascott serviced residence global fund’s maiden acquisitions are quality assets in key gateway cities where demand for serviced residences by expatriates and travellers remains strong. This is a testament of our strong alignment of interest with our capital partners.
"This value-added fund will capitalise on Ascott’s strong capabilities in developing, repositioning and enhancing the value of serviced residences globally.”
He added: “Previously the private residence of the renowned Hennessy family, Citadines Suites Champs-Élysées Paris is a rare gem in the epicentre of the world’s most popular tourist destination... Deepening Ascott’s presence in Paris will enable us to better cater to the strong demand and build economies of scale in our operations.”
“Japan is an equally attractive destination for corporate and leisure travellers given the weak Japanese yen, eased visa requirements and proliferation of low-cost carriers, coupled with the implementation of pro-business policies and designation of special economic zones.”