Featured in this Asia Pacific Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 4 March 2005
HVS International Hosts Conferences in India and China
19 Bids for Singapore’s Integrated Resort
Developments in Asia's Major Airports
Singapore Property Sector on the Upswing
MFS Picks Peppers Leisure for US$23.7m
Billionaire Tsutsumi Indicted in Seibu Railway Probe
Absolute Share Price Performance, as at March 4 2005

HVS International Hosts Conferences in India and China Return to Headlines
Hospitality Conferences: HVS International is proud to host two major hotel investment conferences in India and China.
Hotel Investment Conference - South Asia
First up, HVS International will host the first Hotel Investment Conference - South Asia (HICSA) from 6 to 7 April 2005 at the Hilton Towers hotel in Mumbai, India. HICSA aims to provide an opportunity for hotel owners, investors, operators, bankers and industry specialists to come together to share their best practices, new ideas, latest market trends. For more information, please contact: Lokesh Sabharwal at (+91 11) 24101005 or via email: lsabharwal@hvs.com. For more information, please visit HICSA website www.hvs.com/HICSA/.

China Hotel Investment Summit
Without a doubt, China is rising in stature as the world's economic superpower with unprecedented growth in all sectors within its economy. It is therefore HVS International's pleasure to present the first ever China Hotel Investment Summit (CHIS) which will be held on 28 and 29 April 2005 in the Westin Shanghai. CHIS was conceptualised to provide an opportunity for hotel owners, developers, investors, operators, government agencies and industry specialists to come together to share their best practices, new ideas and the latest market trends. For hotel developers and investors in China, CHIS will be a 'One-Stop' marketplace to tap into new development concepts, a venue to meet major regional and international hotel operators, prospective equity partners, financing partners and industry experts and learn of new investment opportunities. For more information, please contact: David Ling at +65 6293-4415 (Ext. 11) or via email: dling@hvsinterantional.com.sg or Nevius Glussi at +65 6293-4415 (Ext. 12) or via email: nglussi@hvs.com.sg. For more information, please visit CHIS website www.hvs.com/CHIS/.

19 Bids for Singapore’s Integrated Resort Return to Headlines

Some of the world's gaming and resort operators have submitted their bids to build and operate the proposed Integrated Resort (IR). The Singapore government put up a Request for Concept (RFC) at the end of 2004 to solicit for concept plans by developers on two possible sites - a 35.6-hectare site on Sentosa Island and a 12.4-hectare site at Marina South, close to the new Business Financial Centre. Initial signs from the government indicate that the Sentosa site would either be a large scale development at a beach or marina setting with a wide range of entertainment facilities like restaurants, hotels, retail outlets, theatres and themed attractions or a high-intensity, mixed-used development in the city with facilities including hotels, shopping arcades, food and beverage outlets, theme attractions as well as cultural amenities such as concert halls, theatres and museum. Companies which have confirmed submission include Capitaland in partnership with MGM Mirage and Kerzner International for different sites, Eighth Wonder, Genting International and Star Cruises, Keppel Land with Harrah’s Entertainment, Sun International, Tabcorp and Wynn Resorts.

Developments in Asia's Major Airports Return to Headlines

The Singapore government has announced a US$179 million fund to sustain traffic development and costs reduction initiatives at Changi Airport. The Air Hub Development Fund, introduced in 2003, was so effective in attracting airlines to operate and expand their services at Changi Airport that the government will launch a new one in 2006 when the existing fund expires at the end of the year. Under the initiative, airlines operating out of Changi and Seletar Airports enjoy a 15 % rebate on landing fees. Additionally, airlines are given incentives to expand their network out of Changi Airport. Across the Causeway, as reported in our newsletter last week, Kuala Lumpur International Airport was selected over Subang Airport for the location of the planned low cost carrier terminal. The Malaysia government announced this week that Subang Airport in Kuala Lumpur will now house a maintenance and overhaul facility, as well as a general aviation centre for chartered flights, private jets and fighter aircraft. In Hong Kong, it was announced that the government is planning to sell its interest in the Airport Authority and executives have said that a stock market listing may happen in 2006.

Singapore Property Sector on the Upswing Return to Headlines

The time of the year for companies to post their earnings has arrived. A compilation of some of the major property players in Singapore - Capitaland, City Developments, Keppel Land and United Overseas Land - have revealed combined net earnings of US$946million for the year ending 31 December 2004. This was more than double of 2003's US$448million. Capitaland posted a record net profit of US$186million, a whopping 205% higher than the preceding year. As reported last week, City Developments saw a net profit increase of 33.2% from US$91 million to US$120.7. The company is currently planning on setting up an office Reit of at least US$595 million with its flagship Republic Plaza, City House and The Arcade. Analysts have noted that the record earnings are an indication that the local property market is on the mend. In another report, analysts estimated that office rents will rise by as much as 10 per cent by the end of the year, with the tightening of office supply and the improving economic environment.

MFS Picks Peppers Leisure for US$23.7m Return to Headlines

The acquisitive MFS Group yesterday confirmed it had agreed to buy 100 per cent of luxury accommodation provider Peppers Leisure for nearly US$23.7million. As part of the US$23.4 million deal it will take on US$6 million of debt relating to the Peppers Guesthouse and Peppers Convent in the Hunter Valley, which are valued at US$9.9 million. The Peppers Retreats and Resorts brand has about 810 rooms in 18 resorts and retreats around Australia and New Zealand. Peppers plans to expand to nearly 2000 rooms in 26 locations next year. MFS Executive Chairman Phil Adams said the purchase, along with a full merger with management rights company BreakFree, would boost the company's accommodation products. On Monday, MFS's bid for BreakFree went unconditional after it snared more than 50.1 per cent of the listed management group. Upon a complete acquisition of BreakFree, the merged entitiy is expected to have a market capitalisation of more than US$305 million. MFS also disclosed that it was in negotiations to buy another major management group, currently operating resorts in Australia and New Zealand".

Billionaire Tsutsumi Indicted in Seibu Railway Probe Return to Headlines

Yoshiaki Tsutsumi, a billionaire and a former chairman of Japan's Seibu Railway Co. was arrested as part of investigation into possible fraud in the company. This paved the way for an overhaul in the Seibu Group, which has interests in railway, hotels, ski resorts and golf courses. Earlier, a Seibu Group reform panel had unveiled an interim plan urging Seibu Railway Co., to merge with a spinoff of the group's core firm Kokudo Corp. and absorb Kokudo's Prince Hotels. The plan also called for the Group's withdrawal from 40 of its 160 resort facilities and hotels. Under the plan, Kokudo, an unlisted company running the Prince Hotels chain, will be divided into two, including the entity to merge with Seibu Railway. Additionally, the plan also urged Seibu Railway to increase its share capital by US1.41million to US$1.88billion before the merger. The measures are designed to reduce former Seibu Group leader Yoshiaki Tsutsumi's influence over the group.

Absolute Share Price Performance, as at March 4 2005
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