OSK Property unveils its first TOD, You City III, in Cheras
Located in southeast Kuala Lumpur, OSK Property’s latest offering and first transit-oriented development (TOD), You City III in Cheras is poised to become a thriving, strategic development. It is OSK’s first pure TOD with a covered bridge that will link it directly to the Taman Suntex MRT station. The project is targeted towards young professionals, couples and young families who would prefer to commute to and from work in the Kuala Lumpur city centre – which is only seven stations away – to avoid the traffic. Launched on May 12, You City III will be built on a 5.5-acre freehold parcel in Cheras (9th mile) and is scheduled to be completed in 2023. With a GDV of RM488 million, the project comprises two 39-storey towers housing 800 serviced apartments. It is the third and final phase of the 20-acre, RM1.2 billion You City township in Cheras 9th mile. (The Edge)

REITs still a good defensive play against market volatility
Despite the recent US-China trade flare-up, Bursa Malaysia’s real estate investment trusts (REITs) are still considered by market watchers to be a safe defensive bet. “REITs are indeed good to add to a defensive strategy portfolio,” said MIDF head of research Mohd Redza Abdul Rahman. The sectoral index has made stable movements over the past few months despite the overall market decline. Year-to-date, the Bursa Malaysia REIT index has been among the more stable indices, especially compared to the FBM KLCI’s 5.46% decline since the start of 2019. However, another investment bank-backed analyst said whether or not REITs will remain attractive depends on the movement of bond yields. (The Edge)

Asia’s billionaires develop taste for boutique wealth managers
Growing demand by Asia’s rich for independent advisory services and access to a wide variety of investment products is spurring the surge of boutique wealth managers more associated with the established wealth hubs of Switzerland and London. The boutiques, or so-called external asset managers (EAMs), mainly tap small-and-mid-level business owners and executives by leveraging their locally based advisers’ contacts and family ties. While it is a long-established practice in developed wealth centres, industry officials say Asia has scope to multiply the current pool of less than 200 such boutique wealth managers. EAMs offer investment advisory, tax and succession planning services to clients, and partner with the large wealth managers such as Credit Suisse and UBS to open accounts and execute deals. As they are not tied to any particular private bank, they are free to offer bespoke and independent advisory services, a flexibility that Asia’s rich find increasingly attractive. (The Edge)

No decision yet on ECRL’s bumiputera quota
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government had yet to decide on imposing a bumiputera quota on the civil works that are reserved for local contractors in the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project. He was commenting on reports that the Malaysian Bumiputera Contractors Association had called on the government to provide a special quota of at least 20% of the local work portion to bumiputera contractors. Under the new supplementary agreement signed on April 12, Dr Mahathir previously said China Communications Construction Co Ltd had agreed to ensure 40% of the civil works are awarded to local contractors. (The Edge)

EPF reported to be buying UK’s Sports Direct warehouse for RM562m
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is reported to be buying UK’s Sports Direct warehouse for £120mil (RM562mil). UK’s Daily Mail reported that billionaire Mike Ashley, who owns British sportswear retailer Sports Direct International Plc, was selling the site in Shirebrook, Derbyshire although his firm will stay on as a tenant for 15 years. The newspaper reported that Ashley was slammed over poor conditions for workers at the facility, with MPs on the Business Select Committee likening it to a “Victorian workhouse” in 2016. (The Star Online)