DBS to sell 46 HDB units and retail units at S$210m

DBS has listed for sale 46 HDB shop- and shophouse-units, as well private strata retail properties with a guide price totaling about S$210m.

The Business Times believes that these units used to be full-service branches of banks some years ago. The total area is approximately 69.500 square feet. Individually, the 46 units are for sale. Sales began, it is said, a couple of weeks ago.

The 10 private strata retail units are located at Thomson Plaza, Gleneagles Medical Centre, The Centrepoint in Orchard Road, and 6 Raffles Quay (formerly known as John Hancock Tower). The 10 strata-titled retail units in Thomson Plaza are at Gleneagles Medical Centre in Orchard Road; The Centrepoint, Orchard Road; and 6 Raffles Quay.

DBS spokesperson says the bank will sell the 46 properties in 29 different locations as they are non-strategic and the management of property is not their core business.

16 locations are used in part by the bank as 24/7 self-service branches without counter services and ATMs. This 16-location bank occupies just over 10% of all the available space.

A spokesperson for DBS said that the remainder of the space being offered for sale, or nearly 90%, is either leased, with some tenants having been in place for 10-20 years, or vacant.

Terra Hill

Market reports say that the HDB units in the 46 unit portfolio have tenures ranging anywhere from 44 to 68.

Gleneagles Medical Centre, 6 Raffles Quay and the Gleneagles Medical Centre are all freehold properties. Thomson Plaza sits on a land with a 51-year leasehold balance. The Centrepoint’s strata unit is leased for around 54-years.

DBS, it is believed, has appointed CBRE Cushman & Wakefield JLL Knight Frank Triple One Properties, Cushman & Wakefield and Cushman & Wakefield for the marketing of these units.

The unit at 6 Raffles Quay with the highest price guide, slightly over S$19.4 Million, is 5,145 square feet. Two units in the second level of Gleneagles Medical Centre, located at Napier Road, have guide prices that are close to S$10,000,000 (for a 700 square foot unit) and S$8.5,000,000 for a 592 square foot unit.

DBS had around 170 branch offices after acquiring POSB in the year 1998. It has now decreased to around 70 branches. This figure has remained relatively stable over the past several years.

The 70 branches consist of full-service (with counter service), financial planning and 24/7 self-service. Many are manned with digital ambassadors.

In 1998, there were only 950 ATMs. Today, the group operates a network of 1,900 self-service machines, including ATMs, and POSB-Cash-Points, which are located in merchant outlets such as Giant, Cold Storage, and 7-Eleven.

The branch network has undergone a reorganization over the past 25-years due to the duplication of branches and the declining footfall in the branches. Customers prefer to bank online, or during non-operational hours.

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