The Pioneers of Property Development

Characterised by its subtropical climate and cultural diversity, Southeast Asia has risen steadily to become one of the world leaders in property development. Through the vision of companies who have taken risks and spearheaded change, the business has flourished and witnessed some truly remarkable projects. The future looks incredibly bright for property development in this region, particularly as the highlighted companies are championing ‘going green’. Environmentally-friendly and sustainable ventures are now the priority to ensure a safe and thriving market for generations to come. Each of the companies listed has unlocked the potential in their areas and many have successfully tapped into the global market. We have listed some of the most prolific developers in Southeast Asia and explore how they have become industry forerunners.


Frasers Centrepoint Limited (FCL)

FCL is a full-fledged international real estate company and one of Singapore’s top property companies with total assets of approximately S$17 billion as at 30 September 2014. FCL has four core businesses focused on residential, commercial, hospitality and industrial properties spanning over 35 cities across Asia, Australasia, Europe, and the Middle-East. FCL is listed on the Main Board of the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited (SGX-ST). The company is also the sponsor of three real estate investment trusts listed on the Main Board of the SGX-ST. They are Frasers Centrepoint Trust, Frasers Commercial Trust, and Frasers Hospitality Trust, which are focused on retail properties, office and business space properties, and hospitality properties, respectively. As a testament to its excellent service standards, best practices, and support of the environment, FCL is the proud recipient of numerous awards and accolades both locally and abroad.


Pace Development Corporation (PACE)

Founded in 2004 and based in Bangkok, PACE is the forerunner in opulent Thai property and hospitality. Having recently purchased the prestigious Dean and DeLuca brand, it has now expanded its portfolio to include global food and beverages. Listed on the Thailand stock exchange in 2013, PACE prides itself on its commitment to delivering high end, quality, and innovatively designed property to discerning customers. Properties include conceptually formed condos and sumptuous beachfront apartments. With a passion for architecture and attention to detail, PACE co-founder and CEO, Sorapoj Techakraisri has a Bachelor’s degree in Business. He is also a major stakeholder in family-run project developer, L.PN Development PLC. PACE was awarded Best Luxury Condo Development at the 2014 Thailand Property Awards.


Ayala Land Inc.

With a history which can be traced back as far as 1834, Ayala Land Inc., a global property development company based in Makati, Philippines, has continued to grow from strength to strength. This thriving enterprise prides itself on its commitment and resolute ethos of creating sustainable and environmentally cognizant properties. Featuring amongst their impressive portfolio are Business Parks, financial districts, malls, hotels and suburban homes. The accolades that they have accumulated over the years are testament to the quality reputation acquired through dedication and ethical responsiveness. Amongst their achievements is the Platinum Award for All Around Excellence, Corporate Governance, Social Responsibility, Environmental Responsibility and Investor Relations | The Asset Magazine. Recently appointed, Bernard Vincent O. Dy is the President and CEO of Ayala Land Inc. having served as the Executive Vice President from 2005, he has had an illustrious career in the property industry. Dy is a graduate of the University of Chicago with a double Masters in Business Administration and International Relations.


Vingroup Joint Stock Company

Formally known as Technocom, Vingroup was initially established in the Ukraine in 1993 by a group of Vietnamese youths. It was then apportioned into Vincom and Vinpearl which finally merged in 2012 to form Vingroup. The focus of this hugely successful initiative has been to provide sustainable long term developments with an emphasis on lifestyle and close cultural ties. Not only have Vingroup been trailblazers for property development it has pioneered the most flourishing multi-sectorial business group in Vietnam; offering services in areas as diverse as education and healthcare. Two Vingroup 5-star hotels recently received top awards at the Fourth International Hotel Awards, 2014. Leading The Vingroup family is the recently appointed CEO, Duong Thi Mai Hoa, formally General Director at the Vietnam International Commercial Joint Stock Bank.


Major Development PCL

Founded by the Poolvoralaks family in 1999, Major Development has become one of the most revered and lucrative development companies in Thailand. Specialising in luxury residential apartments, it was recently awarded the Best Developer Accolade at the 2014 Thailand Property Awards. It also received a commendation in the category of Best Luxury Condo Development. Led by dynamic co-founder and CEO Suriyou Poolvoralaks, Major Development currently have 12 projects in progress which focus on providing high specification, innovatively designed living spaces. Interior design and sourcing the best materials are an integral part of the Major Development success story. It is registered on the Thailand Stock exchange with a capital worth of Baht 700 million.


Sinar Mas Land (SML)

Established in 1988, Sinar Mas Land has expanded to become the largest and most progressive land development company in Indonesia. Shortly after formation the visionaries at SML delivered Bumi Serpong Damai, now one of the most emblematic city and township projects in Indonesia. SML is also a thriving member of the international market place with residential, commercial and hospitality developments in Malaysia, Singapore and China. It is synonymous with implementing social, economic and environmental sustainability to its projects and affording fair prices for producers and consumers. In the last three years SML have consistently picked up a number of prestigious awards for best design, best green building and sustainable development. SML is owned by billionaire family, the Widjajas.


Sunway Integrated Properties

First established as a tin mining company in 1974, Sunway Integrated Properties has now become Malaysia’s leading property developer, with links in over 40 locations worldwide. This incredible success story was founded upon a commitment to deliver integrated environments in sectors ranging from construction and hospitality to commerce and education. Lifestyle concept and flagship project, Sunway City Resort (Kuala Lumpur), is the first green township in Malaysia – attracting over 42 million visitors a year. Sunway was named in The Best of The Best category as Malaysia’s Builders of The Year 2014 by Frost and Sullivan. Widely respected CEO and founder, Tan Sri Dr Jeffrey Cheah, was in 2014 named Outstanding Malaysian CEO by The Edge Billion Ringott Club as well as being Malaysian Outstanding Property Personality.


SM Development Corporation (SMDC)

With property developments spanning the Philippines, SMDC works relentlessly to provide affordable yet quality housing options that appeal to today’s upscale market. It not only prides itself on delivering first class residences but also places emphasis on lifestyle as a whole; ensuring that it is sustainable and environmentally friendly. Sophisticated retails environments envelop the individually designed residential areas making it much sought after. Under the leadership of CEO and Vice Chairman, Henry T. Sy, Jr., SMDC has collected distinctions from the Philippines property awards committee and was also awarded Readers Digest Trusted Brand of 2014.


Absolute World Group (AWG)

Founded in Thailand in 1998 and covering six divisions, AWG has metamorphosed into one of Asia’s most unique and diverse property developers. Specialising in luxury resort real estate, the company prides itself in its hugely successful Vacation Club Membership and Fractional Ownership offerings. Their award-winning Fractional Ownership product offers customers a rare opportunity to own outstanding property in the Land of Smiles. Absolute Twin Sands Resort and Spa and The Beach Samui part of Design Hotels are among the sensational properties designed and delivered by AWG. With over 28 years of experience in the industry, Bryan Lunt is the visionary Chairman and CEO of AWG. He has led his team to several accolades including winner of Best Boutique Developer – Thai Property Awards and OOP’s (Overseas Property Professional) Best Global Developer.


PT Lippo Karawaci Tbk

Established in 1990 under the name of PT Tunggal Retsehencana, Lippo Karawaci was formed after a merger in 2004. Since then it has expanded its portfolio to include urban development, retail malls, healthcare and leisure and has become the largest listed property company in Indonesia. The visionary flagship projects of Lippo Village and Lippo Cikarang Township in the 1990’s were prime examples of sustainability. They encompassed the first class physical and social infrastructure which is still a focus of the company ethos today. Lippo Homes is led by accomplished CEO Ivan Boediono. Lippo Karawaci was voted as one of the Top 50 Best Companies in Indonesia by Forbes in July 2014. It has received several industry awards including the 2014 Frost and Sullivan award for Indonesian Healthcare Service Provider of the Year.

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