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Pidemco Land makes first commercial investment in Japan with office purchase

Singapore, 07 September, 2000

Singapore, September 7 - Pidemco Land is pleased to announce that it has acquired 11 floors of office space in the 31-storey Shinjuku Square Tower, Tokyo from Sumitomo Life Insurance Company. This is Pidemco Land's first office acquisition and its second investment in Japan following a recent residential joint venture in Tokyo.

Pidemco Land will invest about S$140 million for 119,447 square feet (11,097 square metres) of net lettable space in the freehold office block. This translates to an average price of about S$1,170 per square foot.

The 11 floors purchased by Pidemco Land, from 19th to 29th storey, in the class A Shinjuku Square Tower are fully leased to mainly IT-related companies. Shinjuku ward is a hub for IT and telecommunications companies.

Pidemco Land President Mr Liew Mun Leong said: "Price of commercial properties in Tokyo have fallen to about half their peak values compared to the early nineties. It is opportunistic to enter Japan's property market now as we believe prices are very attractive and investments could produce good yields. Rentals and occupancy rates have also been improving for class A office buildings in the last six months."

He added: "Pidemco's first commercial acquisition in Japan brings to fruition our efforts in searching for the right investments which brings very rewarding yields. We will continue to explore opportunistic investments in the Japan property market."

Shinjuku Square Tower is a six-year-old office building located in Shinjuku, Tokyo's prime business district. It has 481,150 sq ft of total gross floor area and a net lettable area of 312,200 sq ft. The building has floor plates of 10,290 sq ft which are considered large by Japan standards. It is also a building which has been designed according to the latest Japanese seismic and engineering codes.

The building is easily accessible by the Nishi Shinjuku and Shinjuku train stations. It is also near the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office, international hotels, Tokyo Medical College Hospital, Shinjuku Central Park and the largest Kinokuniya bookstore in Japan.

Sumitomo Life, which was founded in 1926, currently ranks among Japan's third largest life insurance companies and one of the world's largest life insurer. It has total assets of ¥23 trillion (S$388 billion) as at March 31, 2000. It develops insurance and pension products to cater to the diverse needs of individual and corporate clientele.

Pidemco Land is a leading property developer, investor and manager of quality residential and commercial properties in Singapore. It has properties and investments in 24 cities in 12 countries in the Asia-Pacific region and the UK. The Group's portfolio includes serviced residences and shopping centres which are owned and/or managed by its Singapore-listed subsidiary Somerset Holdings.