GIC, Nova to set up China rental apartment platform

SINGAPORE (The Straits Times/ANN) - Both partners said in a joint statement yesterday that the platform will invest in "quality rental apartment projects" in core locations across China's Tier 1 cities.

GIC, Singapore's sovereign wealth fund, is partnering Nova, a Shanghai-based property investment and asset management platform, to set up a 4.3 billion yuan (S$904 million) rental apartment platform in China.

GIC will be acquiring a minority stake in Nova, a company co-founded by Mr Wang Qian and global private equity firm Warburg Pincus.

Wang, who is also chairman and chief executive of Nova, said: "Our vision is to become a leading investment and asset management platform in the urban renewal and rental apartment sector, to deliver the best-in-class investment, renovation and operation services."

GIC Real Estate chief investment officer Lee Kok Sun added: "As a long-term value investor, we are attracted by the promising outlook of China's fast-growing rental apartment sector, with demand driven by changing demographic trends and cultural shifts towards city living.

"There is a large and growing population of renters within our target income group, with a limited supply of quality institutionally owned and professionally managed projects."

The transaction is expected to be completed in the third quarter of this year, subject to regulatory approvals by the relevant authorities.

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