With hybrid workplaces and vaccination roll-out shaping how businesses adapt to the pandemic, property developer Boustead Properties Berhad (Boustead Properties), remains optimistic about the performance of its commercial and retail portfolio this year.
Occupancy rates of the company’s commercial assets are currently above 90% higher than the average occupancy rate of similar grade buildings within similar locations. Its latest addition, Nucleus Tower, an MSC Cybercentre status, and GBI Gold Grade A office tower which occupies a prominent corner site within the popular Mutiara Damansara area is set to increase its occupancy to 95% come the third quarter of 2021.
In what is seen as a recovery year despite challenges posed by the pandemic, the company expects occupancy of its commercial space to continue in this trend.
Boustead Properties’ Senior General Manager Property Management & Investment Jazmi Kamarudin said that while the utilisation of office space is certainly evolving, rental, ready facilities, security, digitalisation and the location of commercial real estate will be key drivers for the sector.
“Affordable offices that provide a flexible, technology-compatible workspace are still considered crucial as companies require employees to engage and collaborate while maintaining a safe environment. Investments in commercial properties will also be reliant on property and financial incentives.”
He added, “As certain businesses have expanded during the pandemic, some of these, including those in e-commerce, selected grocery brands, and logistics will need larger or additional spaces to operate from. By adapting and reimagining how we market office and retail spaces in these changing times, Boustead Properties plans to move forward, spurred on by Boustead Holdings’ Reinventing Boustead strategy which intends to unlock value and tap the benefits of digitalisation through harnessing the fit-for-purpose technology.”
Under the Group’s mall operations, the Curve, Mutiara Damansara continues to maintain a commendable occupancy rate of 90% despite a generally soft retail market. Following plans to redevelop eCurve and tenant movements, Boustead Properties said that between January and June 2021, it has welcomed 13 new retail tenants ranging from F&B, fashion, services, and furniture, which now can be found at the shopping mall.
Jazmi commented: “Our mall has been relatively protected in the current retail climate. With more new tenants expected in the second half of 2021, we expect the mall to remain resilient and reach 95% occupancy by end-year.”