SPH Reit will have "right of first refusal" on Seletar Mall

The four-storey Seletar Mall, which officially opened on Friday, will house the area's first cinema and aims to cater to young families. -- ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG
The four-storey Seletar Mall, which officially opened on Friday, will house the area's first cinema and aims to cater to young families. -- ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

SINGAPORE - SPH Reit will have the "right of first refusal" when its sponsor decides to divest The Seletar Mall, unitholders at the reit's inaugural annual general meeting on Friday were told.

"When the sponsor decides that it is time for them to divest the property, SPH Reit will evaluate the opportunity...from the reit's perspective, it is important that the mall stabilises, as the reit's objective is to provide unitholders with regular and stable distributions," said Ms Susan Leng, the chief executive officer of SPH Reit Management.

The four-storey mall, which also officially opened on Friday, will house the area's first cinema and aims to cater to young families.

SPH Reit, which made its debut on the Singapore Exchange mainboard on Jul 24 last year, owns two properties - Paragon and Clementi Mall. The AGM on Friday was attended by about 300 unitholders.

In addition to the potential acquisition of the newly-opened Seletar Mall, unitholders were also concerned about the impact of e-commerce on shopper traffic.

Ms Leng said the reit manager's retail tenants have embraced e-commerce and are using it to complement their brick-and-mortar operations.

"The 'touch-and-feel' (aspect of retail) still has a big part to play," she added.

SPH Reit has released its first annual report detailing its performance from its listing date to Aug 31 this year - slightly longer than the usual 12 months.

Distribution per unit for the period was 5.99 cents on the back of strong rental growth, exceeding forecasts by 3.8 per cent.

Valuations for the reit's portfolio properties have gone up 3.4 per cent since its initial public offering to $3.16 billion.