MOTOR magnate Karsono Kwee is embarking on yet another major property investment. This time, the executive chairman of the Eurokars Group is building a new S$60 million headquarters at Tanjong Penjuru in the west.
Eurokars represents Rolls-Royce, Porsche, Mini, Mazda and McLaren in Singapore, and has several showrooms in the prime Leng Kee motor belt, almost all of which are in premises owned by Mr Kwee.
The group also has a 150,000 square foot headquarters in Sungei Kadut which houses a showroom, workshop, pre-delivery inspection services and bonded facility, but the built-up area is small.
It is also ageing, which is why Eurokars has secured the 175,700 sq ft JTC industrial site at 57, Tanjong Penjuru. Mr Kwee clinched the 20-year leasehold site last October with a S$13 million bid.
The Tanjong Penjuru project is the latest in a line of big property investments that the Eurokars Group has undertaken.
Early next year, the group will erect a S$60 million Rolls-Royce showroom to complement the existing Rolls-Royce, Porsche and Mini buildings at 27 and 29 Leng Kee Road.
This 40,000 sq ft site between Kung Chong and Chang Charn roads, with 40 years left on the lease, was bought in late 2011 from Premier Taxis for more than S$20 million.
And back in 2014, Eurokars bought a 13,450 sq ft plot at 11 Leng Kee Road, at its junction with Hoy Fatt Road. This property now houses the Mazda dealership.
Eurokars did not disclose the purchase price, but in an earlier unrelated case in the High Court, it was mentioned that the site had been put up for sale at S$16.8 million.
When asked about his recent forays into the property sector, Mr Kwee pointed out that Eurokars was "expanding sales and after-sales capacity in tandem with growth in current and projected business volume".
"These investments are undertaken with the aim of enhancing our commitment to deliver an excellent level of customer service for all the brands we represent," he said.
The ground-breaking ceremony at Tanjong Penjuru was held last week for the construction of a six-storey facility with a total gross floor area of 438,000 sq ft.
It will house workshops for repairs and maintenance, pre-delivery inspection, body repair and spray painting of all brands under the group.
Some of its state-of-the-art equipment includes the high-tech Car-O-Liner collision repair system, aluminium body repair booths and customised paint booths to accommodate very large cars like the Extended Wheelbase Rolls-Royce Phantom.
The facility will also provide a holding area for cars awaiting delivery and cater to increased warehousing requirements for motor vehicles amid an expected expansion in the COE quota.
Construction is expected to be completed in 18 months.
Mr Kwee said: "This plot of land is perfect for the Eurokars Group. It is conveniently located in western Singapore, bounded by popular expressways like Ayer Rajah Expressway and West Coast Highway. With all the group's showrooms situated along the Leng Kee road belt, the Penjuru site is ideal to support our daily operations."
This article was first published on July 06, 2016.
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