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BlackRock Ups Stake in Mapletree Logistics Trust, Becoming Substantial Unitholder

BlackRock Ups Stake in Mapletree Logistics Trust, Becoming Substantial Unitholder

3 Changi South Lane Mapletree

Mapletree Logistics Trust recently sold 3 Changi South Lane

BlackRock Inc. has become a substantial investor in Mapletree Logistics Trust, the Singapore-based industrial specialist, as the US asset manager continues to target the city-state’s industrial sector.

Through one of its subsidiaries, BlackRock acquired just under 1.8 million units of the trust for a total of S$3 million ($2.3 million), equating to a price of S$1.69 for each unit, the trust announced in a filing to the Singapore Exchange.

The transaction boosted BlackRock’s deemed interest in Mapletree Logistics Trust from 240.3 million voting shares or 4.99 percent, to 242.1 million shares or 5.02 percent, meaning it exceeds the 5 percent threshold to be considered a substantial unitholder.

Under Singapore law, a REIT’s substantial unitholders must disclose their interest or change in interest in the trust’s voting shares. The transaction comes after BlackRock ceased to be a substantial unitholder in SGX-listed Cromwell European REIT (CEREIT) after selling down its stake in the trust at the end of last year.

MLT Sells Assets

Mapletree Logistics Trust had S$12.6 billion in assets under management as of year-end 2022, comprising 186 properties across Asia Pacific with an occupancy rate of 96.9 percent.

Andrew Lee of BlackRock

BlackRock’s Andrew Lee said the company was bullish on Singapore industrial

The company’s largest shareholder is Singapore government-linked Temasek Holdings, which was most recently computed to have a 32 percent holding in Mapletree Logistics Trust, with Vanguard Group holding 2 percent.

Mapletree Logistics Trust struck an agreement in December to sell an ageing warehouse near Singapore’s Changi Airport to a local furniture retailer, Nova Furnishing Holdings, for S$22 million. The disposal of the 11,315 square metre (121,792 square foot) asset was intended to free up cash to invest in fresh assets, the company announced.

In January, the trust’s manager announced that the REIT will be selling two warehouses in Malaysia with a total value of MYR 50.2 million ($11.6 million) to Sigma Warehousing.

BlackRock Expands

BlackRock, which had $8.59 trillion in assets under management as of the fourth quarter of 2022, has flagged its intention to continue investing in Singapore’s industrial assets, driven by region-leading yields.

“Singapore industrial is a very good fit for our value-add strategy of building a portfolio of high quality income-producing properties for core investors that offer a good yield spread to borrowing costs,” said BlackRock Alternatives director and head of investments for Southeast Asia real estate Andrew Lee at a Mingtiandi forum.

In June, the company was reported to be planning to double its office footprint in Singapore’s central business district, with BlackRock expecting to add dozens of new staff members.

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