KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 24): UEM Sunrise Bhd chief executive officer Sufian Abdullah said on Thursday (Feb 24) the property developer’s turnaround will be driven by a combination of factors including asset monetisation, revenue stream refocus and sizeable new property sales against a challenging operating environment marred by overhang real estate units amid the lingering economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Sufian said UEM Sunrise, which is looking to dispose of non-core assets of over RM300 million in 2022, is streamlining its business to focus purely on property development revenue and higher-value assets.
The company, which targets to launch new property projects worth about RM3.3 billion in 2022, is aiming for new property sales of RM1.5 billion during the year, according to Sufian, who was speaking at a virtual press conference on Thursday after UEM Sunrise announced on Wednesday (Feb 23) its financials for financial year ended Dec 31, 2021 (FY21).
“The turnaround will be driven by a combination of asset monetisation and refocusing on the revenue stream. Also, we have quite sizeable sales coming in for the next few years.
“(However) We expect a slow (property) take-up (rate) for the beginning of the year (2022), but we foresee the momentum picking up again towards the end of the second half,” he said.
On Wednesday, UEM Sunrise announced that 4QFY21 net loss widened to RM152.26 million from a net loss of RM134.66 million a year earlier.
For the full year, the company said cumulative FY21 net loss, however, narrowed to RM214.33 million from a net loss of RM277.28 million a year earlier.
On Thursday, Sufian said the non-core assets UEM Sunrise plans to sell comprise a combination of land and legacy assets which include car parks, small offices, apartments and unsold bungalow land.
According to Sufian, the company's current landbank stood at about 10,624 acres (about 4,250ha), of which, over 90% are located in the southern region of Peninsular Malaysia within the state of Johor.
Sufian said Johor is a challenging property market, as real estate valuation there has been greatly affected over the last couple of years.
Thus, he said UEM Sunrise is revising its property development master plans in the region.
“Few developments are going on concurrently and those are individual master plans.
"The programme is still ongoing, but we are revising some of the master plans to ensure that we have a clearer view, revenue and also enhanced value coming in from these master plans,” he said.
At Bursa Malaysia on Thursday, UEM Sunrise’s share price fell 3.5 sen or 9.86% at 2.40pm to 32 sen for a market value of about RM1.62 billion.
UEM Sunrise, which has 5.06 billion issued shares, saw some six million shares traded.