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Iskandar Investment puts off further land sales in Iskandar Malaysia [09-07-2013]  
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Iskandar Investment Bhd (IIB) will put off further land sales in Iskandar Malaysia for the time being, said president and chief executive officer (CEO) Datuk Syed Mohamed Ibrahim.

“At the moment, we are not selling. Iskandar is still relatively small and fragile. We want our investors to make money. This is part of our strategy, which we call ‘controlled release’,” he told the press at a briefing.

IIB sealed two property deals with private companies yesterday worth a combined RM4.6bil in gross development value in the economic corridor south of Johor.

The larger of the two projects involves a joint venture between IIB and Mammoth Empire Holdings Sdn Bhd – which built Empire Subang and Empire City in Petaling Jaya – to develop Medini Empire.

The Medini area alone, located within Iskandar’s Nusajaya cluster, still had some 10 million sq ft of gross floor area (GFA) yet to be developed, said Medini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd managing director and CEO Khairil Anwar Ahmad.

“We still have a sizeable amount of GFA in the 809.37ha carved out for mixed use in Medini. Some of this we might develop ourselves.

“It would depend on the market. Right now, quite a lot of developers have purchased land in Medini,” he added.

The RM4bil Medini Empire is a mixed development comprising office towers, hotels, service apartments, loft offices, retail space, a convention centre, a concert hall and a cinema, set for completion in 2018.

IIB – an arm of Khazanah Nasional Bhd and the Johor state government that facilitates investments into the state’s economic corridor – owns 40% of Medini Empire and Mammoth Empire the remaining 60%.

The project is to be built on two parcels of adjoining land spread over 9.71ha in what was the car park for Legoland.

This would be the first foray into Iskandar for Mammoth Empire, better known for its developments in the Klang Valley and Melbourne, Australia under the “Empire” banner.

The group was not concerned about an oversupply in the 3601.70ha Iskandar Malaysia because industrial and infrastructure development was set to create 860,000 job opportunities and spur population and housing demand, said executive director Datuk Danny Cheah.

The second IIB project, dubbed Zikay@Medini, would be undertaken by Zikay Group Sdn Bhd and designed by Veritas Architects.

The mixed development, with RM600mil in potential value, consists of small office home office, boutique retail, a 30-level Grade A office tower and service apartments, to be completed in 2016.

Zikay is the second bumiputra company to invest in this region of Iskandar.

It inked yesterday a lease purchase agreement with Medini Development Sdn Bhd for 1.33ha of land in Medini.

Zikay, which has been active in property development and construction for 20 years, built the Royal Selangor state theatre in Shah Alam and the 40-storey Mercu Zikay@Kampung Baru in Kuala Lumpur.

This is also its maiden venture into Iskandar Malaysia.

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