Country Garden’s status as China’s biggest developer by sales remains intact, after announcing a record RMB 69.16 billion ($11 billion) in new contracts in January, beating out mainland rivals China Evergrande and China Vanke.
The sales volume represents a 42 percent year-on-year jump from last January’s RMB 48.6 billion ($7.7 billion). In total, the Guangdong-based developer sold a gross floor area of 7.56 million square metres of homes during the month.
Country Garden’s haul sets a new record for highest-ever monthly sales in the industry. January sales more than quadrupled month-on-month from December’s unexpectedly low figure of RMB 16.53 billion ($2.6 billion) figure, suggesting the possibility that Country Garden may have delayed some project launches in December after having achieved its 2017 sales target.
Evergrande Falls to Third Place
Vanke took second place behind Country Garden, announcing January sales of RMB 67.98 billion ($10.8 billion), and breaking its own single-month sales record. Evergrande, last year’s second-biggest developer by sales, revealed a RMB 64.36 billion ($10.2 billion) figure for January, slipping to third place.
Country Garden could be set to expand further after arranging around RMB 40 billion ($6.3 billion) in new financing through various channels since the start of this year. In the middle of last month, Country Garden announced plans to raise HK$23.5 billion ($3 billion) from placement of 460 million shares as well as issuing convertible bonds. The move followed the developer’s issuance of $850 million bonds in early January.
Country Garden was also recently given the green light to launch RMB 10 billion ($1.6 billion) worth of asset-backed securities linked to rental apartments.
Country Garden Stockpiles Cash for Acquisitions
As the central government’s deleveraging measures squeeze the flow of credit and slow sales, many small- and medium-sized property developers will find it hard to compete with their better-financed brethren.
As these smaller firms struggle to complete projects, Country Garden aims to secure sufficient cash to acquire unfinished projects and thereby boost its market share, the company’s chief financial officer Wu Jianbin said earlier this month, according to an account in Hong Kong’s Apple Daily.