I-Bhd upbeat on leisure arm


PETALING JAYA: I-Bhd is expected to see a higher contribution from its leisure division in the near future following the scheduled opening of the three-star Best Western hotel next month, according to SJ Securities Sdn Bhd.

“With the opening of the 216-room hotel, we expect better future earnings in this segment as the hotel will be able to attract tourists rather than day trippers to i-City,” the research house said in a report.

It expects the division to contribute at least RM50mil in revenue per year.

Meanwhile, I-Bhd has scaled up the gross development value (GDV) of i-City to RM9bil from RM7bil previously.

SJ Securities said it was positive the company was consciously re-focusing its product price range from mid-tier to the high-end pricing bracket.

This is evident from its RM3.5bil GDV project within i-City, known as The Jewel. The integrated residential, office and hotel development is a futuristic building with facilities catering to work and leisure.

To capitalise on the i-City brand, the company is seeking landowners outside the Klang Valley, whereby I-Bhd will provide the concept and management using the i-City model while the landowners provided the development land.

“This strategy shall relieve the company of the holding cost risk and is also a step in the right direction to reduce the perceived risk being labelled as a single-project developer,” the research house said.

SJ Securities also said the expansion in the property development division should pick up in the financial years ending Dec 31, 2014 and 2015 following more launches of residential plots within i-City as well as Grand i-Residence, its project in the KLCC vicinity.

The proposed LRT line from Bandar Utama to Klang with a stop at i-City would be a major game-changer for the company, as it would serve as a major selling point for its residential buildings and also draw more recreational and shopping crowds to i-City, added SJ Securities.


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