Commerz Real this month expects its first tenant will move into a Singapore office building it bought from Lehman Brothers at a record price five months before the US bank’s collapse.
The real estate asset management arm of Frankfurt-based Commerzbank aims to fill as much as 40% of the 15- story, downtown space by July, 10 months after the building was completed, Hans-Joachim Kuehl, Commerz Real’s head of global real estate acquisitions, said in an interview. The firm acquired the project development from Lehman and a Japanese partner in April 2008.
“It’s one of the worst we’ve done,” Kuehl said of the transaction. “We did the deal before Lehman collapsed, so our research data and intelligence units were quite positive on the outlook of Singapore’s economy, and therefore, the real estate market. The reality proved totally different.”