Jack Ma’s alleged wife bought three adjacent storehouses on Duxton Road

The seller purchased the three adjoining storeys for S$22.2 millions in separate deals. It acquired 70 Duxton Road in 2018 for S$7.55 Million from a company owned Alan Choe. Alan Choe was a former URA director and Sentosa Development Corporation Chairman.

The seller bought No. 71 Duxton Road (for S$7.35million) from a Dr. and No.72 for S$7.3million from Kwek Lee Hoon. Kwek Lee Hoon was the sister of Hong Leong Group Executive Chairman Kwek Leng Beng.

Zhang, according to reports, paid S$4,200 up to S$4,600 each per square foot for the trio.

Market analysts view this price as high. Conservation shophouse deals around Duxton usually do not surpass S$4,000 for a built-up area. However, it is worth noting that the shophouse trio Zhang purchased was on a newly-refurbished basis.

It is clear that this buyer is special and is willing to pay more for an apartment in District 2, which is located in a charming, discreet area.

The Ma family may well have intended that they would use the asset themselves. The Ma family may have intended to use the asset as their own private clubhouse, where they could entertain their friends. They may end up leasing it.

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The shophouse market experienced a dramatic slowdown during the fourth-quarter of 2023. PropNex Realty published a report based caveats that indicated only 15 transactions took place in the fourth-quarter of 2023.

It was the lowest number for a quarterly since 2010. The property agent attributed this to a sluggish economic outlook, and also the increased due-diligence following the anti money laundering blitz of August last year.

The wife, Jack Ma co-founder and CEO of Alibaba Group, bought three adjacent storehouses along Duxton Road.

The Business Times understands Zhang Ying paid S$45-50 million for 70 71 72 Duxton Road. The properties were purchased on commercial-zoned land with 99-year-leasehold tenures that began in September 1998.

Three floors and an upper attic are found in each of the three-storey shophouses. The major refurbishment of these properties is nearly complete.

Urban Redevelopment Authority approves the addition and alterations of an integrated development that includes the three shops, with the first-floor change in use from restaurant to shop. The upper storeys are for office purposes, and refurbishment includes a lift.

Kerry Hill Architects had been hired for the redesign by a Singaporean-based entity. The total built-up surface of the shophouses was estimated to be 10,700 sq. ft. The properties are within the Tanjong Pagar Conservation Area.

The 2023 shophouse market saw 131 deals worth S$1.14bn, down from 191 deals worth S$1.63bn in 2022.

This was the smallest annual volume since 2019, according to Caveats Data, when 123 Shophouses were sold for S$916,000,000.

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