China Poly Group is set to dive deeper into the Australian market through a joint bid with local homebuilder Billbergia for a A$1 billion ($755 million) Sydney residential project.
The state-run developer’s joint proposal with Billbergia sees the transnational team pitted against Shanghai’s Greenland Group, and Beijing-based Macrolink Real Estate, as well as local developer Payce, in competing for the rights to develop two waterfront sites totalling 12 hectares on Sydney’s Wentworth Point, according to an account in The Australian.
The bid for the twin sites along the Parramatta river would fit into a flurry of Sydney and Melbourne projects by the Chinese developer, and comes directly after the successful opening of sales on its project in the Sydney’s Epping area last month.
Four Bids Short-Listed at Wentworth Point
The Australian uncovered Poly’s involvement in the Wentworth project through public records that show a new company was set up on February 26 with Liu Ping, William Kinsella and John Kinsella as joint directors.
Mr Liu is the vice president of Poly Real Estate Group, while the two Kinsellas are the founders of Sydney-based Billbergia, according to the local media report. Poly then confirmed that it was in discussions with a partner to develop one of the Wentworth Point projects, but declined to name the party.
Poly’s potential joint effort with Billbergia comes after the Australian developer’s initial proposal was among four bids shortlisted in February by the Australian authorities charged with overseeing the development of the two land parcels in housing-starved Sydney.
The twin sites could yield up to 2500 apartments, and plans are said to include retail space, a waterfront promenade and a marina, according to the Australian Financial Review. The four short-listed candidates have now been invited to submit final proposals, with a winning bid expected to be selected by mid-year.
The sites, which are currently owned by the Roads and Maritime department of the New South Wales state government, are expected to be sold for around $265million, and the project is predicted to cost a total of $755 million to develop.
Poly Builds Up Australian Portfolio
Poly, which benefits from its ready access to financing through China’s state-run banking network has leveraged that access to funding to build a portfolio of sites in Australia, after buying its first property in Sydney in late 2014.
The Chinese homebuilder last month cashed in on the apartments it began building on the site of a former business park in the city’s Epping area with a lightning sale of $124 million in homes on its first morning of sales.
The developer is counting on that luck continuing as it rushes to buy up more sites in Sydney and Melbourne.
The state-run firm, which began life as an offshoot of a Chinese government arms manufacturer, paid $60.5 million in March for a site on Sydney’s north shore, as well as an apartment joint venture in Melbourne.
In May last year, the company bought a 51 percent stake in an independent project in the Melbourne suburb of South Yarra for A$19.8 million ($14.8 million). The Chinese developer is working with local Australian developer, The Southbank Group to turn the 2168 square metre site into 32,000 square metres of new apartments.
Guangzhou-based Poly is also said to have been in discussions regarding projects on Australia’s Gold Coast and in Queensland, and reportedly bought a development site in Penrith, west of Sydney during February.