Credit Suisse gets loan to buy Lippo Centre: Sources

Credit Suisse Group borrowed $226.5 million to buy Lippo Centre, an office building in the central business district, according to two people with direct knowledge of the deal.

Arranger Calyon is inviting other banks to join the three-year loan, said the people, who declined to be identified before a public announcement. A Credit Suisse spokesman declined to comment.

Credit Suisse bought the building through a real-estate fund that it runs, the people said. The bank’s borrowing is split into a senior portion of $190 million, and a junior loan which will be paid out after the senior part should the bank go into bankruptcy.

Credit Suisse will pay 40 basis points, or 0.4 percentage points, more than the Singapore dollar swap-offer rate, the people said. The loan is backed by the building and rents.

The 34-storey, 492-sq-ft Lippo Centre is owned by Ferrell Realty. Rental costs are as high as $5.5 per square foot, according to an August report by Savills, the United Kingdom’s biggest publicly traded commercial real estate agent.

For buildings near Lippo Centre, rents were between $3.20 and $5.80, the report said.

Singapore real estate “is attractive from a global investor’s perspective,” said Merrill Lynch & Co analyst Sean Monaghan.

Source: TODAY, 31 January 2007 

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