Paramount expands Bukit Banyan township in Kedah

Paramount Corp Bhd’s Bukit Banyan township in Sungai Petani, Kedah is set to add more properties in the coming years as it acquires land to expand the development by some 25 per cent.

The group’s subsidiary Paramount Property (Utara) Sdn Bhd had planned to build a total of 4,480 properties in the 208ha township over eight to 10 years, with a gross development value (GDV) of RM700 million.

Of the total number of units, 1,680 are in the affordable category comprising 1,000 low-cost apartments, 280 low-medium cost townhouses, and 400 medium-cost single-storey terraced house, priced respectively at RM45,000, RM90,000, and RM200,000.

Launched in 2012, Bukit Banyan is Paramount’s third township development in Kedah, after Bandar Laguna Merbok and Taman Patani Jaya.

As at March 31, Bukit Banyan had 72.03ha of undeveloped land and a remaining potential gross development value (GDV) of RM498 million.

On Monday, Paramount said its subsidiary Paramount Property (Utara) Sdn Bhd will buy more land to expand the township development.

Paramount Property has entered into a sales and purchase agreement with BDB Land Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Bina Darulaman Bhd (BDB), to buy two parcels of freehold agriculture land with a combined size of 55.48ha for RM24.02 million.

The market value for both the parcels of land is RM23.3 million to RM22.9 million, based on the valuation ascribed by two separate independent market valuers.

Paramount told Bursa Malaysia that it took into consideration the market value and development potential of the lands before entering into an agreement with BDB Land.

It said with the proposed land acquisition from BDB Land, the township will have 126ha to be developed from now until 2030.

The group chief executive officer Jeffrey Chew said the expected GDV for the two land parcels is RM400 million from both residential and commercial properties to be built after the conversion of the land status.

The purchase will be funded by proceeds received from the divestment of Paramount’s pre-tertiary education business earlier this year, he said.

BDB, the largest developer in Kedah said it is selling the land as the group has no immediate plan to develop the lands.

It said the sale is in the best interest of BDB Land and will enable the company to repay borrowings and raise funds for the working capital requirements.

BDB Land is expected to make a RM9.6 million disposal gain, which will increase the group’s consolidated earnings per share by three sen for the financial year ending December 31, 2020, and also reduce its gearing ratio from 0.28 times to 0.25 times.