(Stocks Discussion) SGX: CapitaLand Mall Trust (SGX: C38U)? - Seedly
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Anonymous

Asked on 08 Jul 2019

(Stocks Discussion) SGX: CapitaLand Mall Trust (SGX: C38U)?

Discuss anything about CapitaLand Mall Trust (SGX: C38U) share price, dividends, yield, ratios, fundamentals, technical analysis and if you would buy or sell this stock on the SGX Singapore markets. Do take note that the answers given by our members are just your opinions, so please do your own due diligence before making an investment in CapitaLand Mall Trust (SGX: C38U)

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Isaac Chan
Isaac Chan, Business at NUS
Level 8. Wizard
Updated on 04 Dec 2019

Just attended their AGM this morning for FY18! I will leave a few highlights from the meeting, as well as some of the thoughts I have on this REIT.

Before I dive into my analysis, this was the first AGM I had ever attended! The AGM was held at Star Vista, one of the properties of CMT. After reaching at 940AM, the number of retirees and old folks there really surprised me! Due to the strong and steady performance of the REIT, the crowd also wasn't too emotional (maybe because it was too early)

Business Profile

CMT is a very popular and well known REIT, which has performed very well over the years since its IPO. It currently has 15 properties worth $10.5 Bn. Some of their iconic malls include Bedok Mall, Bugis+ and Tampines Mall. They have an extensive network of tenants of 2,800 with a portfolio occupancy rate of 99.2% and 338 million in annual shopper traffic. With such an extensive and mature portfolio, CMT seems to be strong.

Results

Income Stats

Despite a slight dip in 2017, gross revenue had recovered to 697.5 million by 2018, a YOY increase of 2.2%. Both net property income (NPI) and distributable income (DI) both had the highest percentage increase YOY. NPI with 3.2% at 493.5mn and DI with 3.8% at 410.7mn. The strongest contributors were Plaza Sing, Tampines Mall and Bugis Junction.

Balance Sheet Data

2018 was a year where CMT had taken on the most amount of debt at 3,683mn, most likely to fund the development of its new properties. Portfolio property valuation also saw a significant increase of more than 10% to 10,076mn due to investment properties related to Funan. The most highly valued properties were WestGate, Plaza Sing and Bugis Junction.

Key Financial Indicators

DPU experienced a significant increase from 11.16 to 11.50 cents, an increase of 3%. This is significant, considering that DPU had remained stagnant in 2016 and 2017 at 11.13 cents and 11.16 cents respectively. Despite the loading of debt, aggregate leverage remained the same as previous years, at 34.2%. This suggest that CMT has a healthy debt profile, and could taken on more debt in the future to grow. An increasing Net Debt/EBITDA suggest that the trust is taking on more debt faster than earnings, but based on their healthy credit profile, I don't think this should be a concern.

Relative Share Price Performance

For 2018, CMT share price experienced a return of 6.1%, despite the STI, FTSE ST REIT and FTSE ST Real Estate decreasing substantially over the year. I believe that this occured because of the defensiveness and maturity of CMT's shopping malls, as well as investor expectations of the RETI's performance with their upcoming malls.

Growth Strategy

Unique Shopping Experience of Mall

What caught my attention the most during the AGM, was the presentation of how Funan will provide an integrated shopping experience with both online and offline features. Instead of fighting e-commerce head-on, I think the mall is right in trying to grow omni-channels with Funan itself, such as housing online presence such as Alibaba and having 24 hour shopping pick-up points.

Interestingly, Funan will also include showers for fitness enthusiasts and bike stops so that cyclist can make Funan their last stop. The mall will even include a rooftop soccer court.

In my mind, this is probably the right strategy to adopt, since this kind of unique retail / lifestyle experience can't be adopted. I also like how the malls also have a strategy to draw both weekday and weekend crowds, and focus less on just attracting the best tenants, but drawing crowds in just for the mall experience.

Potential Divestment of J-Cube

Unlike the other properties, J-Cube isn't performing so well, and management is open to having the mall being divested, just like it had with Sembawang Shopping Centre last year. The reasons for the more lacklustre performance could be due to how crowded the retail space is with JEM, IMM and Westgate. However, Prof Richard J. Magnus cited how government plans to develop the residential place in Jurong will drive high footfall in the long run, and that they are open to different possibilites regarding J-Cube.

Interesting Questions Asked

“What if Jewel cannibalises the other malls?

This I believe, is quite a valid risk, since CMT has Tampines Mall and Bedok Mall already. CEO Tony Tan agreed that Jewel might cannibalise their other malls, citing that the hype of Jewel will most likely draw crowds from around the island. However, he argued that once the hype dies down, it is unlikely that Jewel will continue to cannbalise. Also, he mentioned that in the long run, the target audience for Jewel would be tourists and locals at the airport. Hence, their other malls serve different markets.

I kind of half-agree with Mr Tan’s response, since unless you are a shopping enthusiast, you would most likely have to choose between one of the malls to visit nonetheless. Personally, I have experienced this dilemma myself even between Bedok Mall and Tampines Mall already (I live 10 mins from Bedok Mall). In the short run, consumer appetites might increase to shop more, but I believe that eventually it will taper off and consumers would need to choose between the malls.

“What about overseas expansion?”

This was also a fairly good point made, since the Singapore market is limited and retail density is already quite high. Management responded that the main focus of CMT would still be the Singapore market. Mr Tan argued that the overseas retail space was turbulent as well, which seems to suggest that the option of expanding overseas is not as enviable as it seems to be. Besides, institutional investors were also focused on the local market for the local retail market exposure and the safety of the SGD currency.

Risks

High Malls Concentration

As can be seen, most of their malls are located in CBD, which may potentially cannablise each other. However, I am more concerned about the opening of Paya Lebar Quarter and Jewel in the East (not shown in image)

Having lived in the East all my life, I believe that the retail market there is very saturated already. For eg, Tampines One, Tampines Mall and Century Square are situated right next to each other while sandwiching Tampines MRT Station. Paya Lebar Quarter will also compete with Parkway, Katong Mall, OneKM, Singpost Centre and Paya Lebar Square.

Although Mr Tan responded that the new developments of private condos along the East Coast and the BTO flats next to Bedok Mall will be ready in a few years, it still seems that there are too many malls fighting for the same market.

Limited Singapore Market

As some of the unit-holders pointed out, the market in Singapore is very limited based on our population and the space to develop malls. In fact, Mr Tan agreed that this was the biggest challenge facing CMT, more than e-commerce.

I agree with management’s view to create a more unique retail experienced, but there are some potential pitfalls. Firstly, the malls are still competing with e-commerce sites heavily. Secondly, other malls are starting to adopt such a strategy as well, which means that differentiating CMT’s malls with the rest would become more challenging. Thirdly and probably most importantly, carving out space for such experiences do not generate immediate rental income. By carving out more space for such non-commercial activities like soccer courts, there is less space for tenants to lease which means possibly lower rental income.

Conclusion

As a whole, CMT has performed really well, and should perform even better throughout the year. Yet, I do believe the fight for the Singaporean shopping dollar will only become fiercer. Nevertheless, CMT still seems well poised to adapt to such changes.

My first AGM was interesting so say the least! Didn't get to try any buffet food, but we managed to get $20 CapitaLand vouchers, which we spent on LiHo for the team. At least that was memorable :)

2 comments

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Bjorn Ng
Bjorn Ng

20 Jan 2020

Woahhh awesome!! I went for MCT EGM as well, it was an eye opener! I'm sure you have heard a lot of questions from the old timers hahaha!
Kenneth Lou
Kenneth Lou

20 Jan 2020

Hahah yeah we went, every year we'll go for the AGMs. see ya there!
Kai Kai Boon
Kai Kai Boon
Level 3. Wonderkid
Updated on 07 Jun 2019

I believe CapitalMall Trust is a long-term strong buy based on the following reasons:

1) Strong Management Team: Since inception, DPU (Distribution Per Unit) has risen by a CAGR of 13.1%. This is attributable to successful active management of the malls under Capitamall Trust through value-creation activities - Refurbishment of the malls, active engagement of shoppers through events such as "Tales of the River at Clarke Quay" to differentiate shopping experience.

2) Upcoming Catalyst: New Funan Digital Mall coming online in Mid 2019 this year that would further boost DPU for Capitamall Trust. Given the rebranding and refurbishment, the rental per sq foot is expected to rise for Capitamall Trust as well, further providing tailwainds to Capitamall Trust.

3) Debt Maturity: Average debt maturity stands at 4.4 years, which seems reasonable and the company is unlikely to face serious cashflow needs in the short term. Even in the need to raise additional debt, the company's A2 credit rating would allow the company to meet its cashflow needs relatively easily.

4) Valuation: Based on DPU oof 11.5 cents, current share price of $2.34/share, Distribution Yield stands at 4.91%. Currently, FTSE Straits Times Real Estate Index 12 month yield stands at 4.5%. Given the high quality asset and strong management team at Capitamall Trust, I believe the company should trade at a premium against FTSE Straits Time Real Estate Index. This would imply a yield below of 4.5%. Given that current yield is higher than that of FTSE Straits Times Real Estate Index, I would believe that it is a good buy.

2 comments

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Kelvin Seetoh
Kelvin Seetoh

18 Mar 2019

Would you say a similar reit such as Frasers Centrepoint is better? 4.5% or 5% yield is really too low and it does not justify putting money into a REIT.
Isaac Chan
Isaac Chan

19 Mar 2019

There was a comparison done by Motley Fool comparing the two investments. His conclusion was that FCT beat CMT on all counts. https://www.fool.sg/2019/02/21/better-buy-capitaland-mall-trust-or-frasers-centrepoint-trust-part-3/
Kenneth Lou
Kenneth Lou, Co-founder at Seedly
Level 9. God of Wisdom
Updated on 04 Dec 2019

Seems a pretty trendy question especially with the Funan Mall opening up very recently! Full disclaimer: I'm also a personal investor in CMT stock and I'm definitely long on this stock, having held it for many years and attended their recent AGM recently as well.

By the way, let me digress abit, I love how RICE Media writer, Pan Jie, describes Capitaland Malls in Singapore which makes me an ardent believe in the CMT Stock: "There are 3 types of malls in Singapore.

  1. The first is the Orchard Mall, filled with Tai-tais, TWGs, and price-tags which can blind you.

  2. The second is the Strata Mall; a little shabby, a little eclectic, with the forlorn air of an impending en-bloc.

  3. The last is the Capitaland Mall, designed for mass appeal and precision-engineered for profit.

Between our half-baked descriptions, there’s some measure of truth to be found—every mall resembles every other mall.

CMT is really designed for profit maximisation and it's tenant mix is pretty much the same across most of it's malls. "There’s a McDonalds squatting by the entrance, a Gongcha in the basement, and a flock of claw machines high above. On the second floor, there’s either a MUJI, a Uniqlo or a Challenger selling power banks on discount. In B2, you will walk past a Boost Juice, a GNC, a supermarket, and probably a Breadtalk. After a while, the different malls blend into one." I guess the important one is to find out how the CMT stock is doing by focusing on a few key metrics I feel are most important to assess retail stocks:

  1. Lease expiry and occupancy

  2. Increasing DPU over the years

  3. Market sentiment

You can find out more about these movements in these two images below...

For point 1 and 3: Occupancy and Market sentiment (shopper traffic)

For point 2: on increasing DPU

The main concern now with the stock is that it is currently at a high and many analysts claim to say that it is currently over-valued. However, I feel that as Singapore's oldest REIT and it's first actually, this should be a stable one which is set to grow for the long run provided Singapore's economy maintains resilient and not be hit by an overly severe recession which cuts spending back severely. In fact, if that happens, I will definitely double down on more CMT stock as well given how the recent AEI (asset enhancement initiatives) have been pretty successful with Funan and also sometime back with Bugis Plus.

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Kenneth Lou
Kenneth Lou

19 Jul 2019

It's done up by FifthPerson who was helping us out with this CMT stock :)
Jay Hou
Jay Hou

2w ago

Is that a good thing that a mall is so precision-engineered?
Kelvin Seetoh
Kelvin Seetoh, Founder at Kelvestor.com
Level 6. Master
Answered on 03 Dec 2019

As always, CapitaLand manages their REITs very well.

This is a good REIT however the yield is a bit too low for my liking. It is currently around 3.6 - 3.8%. Another REIT to consider could be CapitaLand Retail China Trust.

I use YieldSavvy to do a quick filtering.

Here's an guide if it helps:

https://kelvestor.com/blog/yieldsavvy-the-hidden-tool-for-reits-investing ​​​

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Gabriel Tham
Gabriel Tham, Kenichi Tag Team Member at Tag Team
Level 9. God of Wisdom
Answered on 15 Mar 2019

Shopping malls!!

Temasek owns 28%.

But at current price is really quite expensive. Probably wait till 5% yield again then buy more.

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Second quarter 2020 onwards capitalmall trust will start to see the pain.

There are also expiring leases in 2020 and 2021 that may be difficult to replace. Will occupancy rate be able to recover to before the pandemic?

For F&B businesses in malls, social distancing means less sit in traffic. They are one of the highest PSF tenants. More: https://youtu.be/i-JsD_5uDMI

​​​

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Gavin Tan
Gavin Tan
Level 5. Genius
Answered 2w ago

I just wrote a quick summary on CMT's latest Q2 results. You can read it here : https://sgstockmarketinvestor.com/3-key-takeaways-from-the-2q-results-of-capitaland-mall-trust/

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Sudhan
Sudhan
Level 6. Master
Updated 2w ago

CMT just posted its 2020 first-half earnings results yesterday.

Due to rental waivers and the circuit breaker measures, net property income fell around 21% year-on-year to S$216.4 million.

Distributable income tumbled 48.7% to S$109.7 million while distribution per unit (DPU) declined by 49% to 2.96 Singapore cents.

However, some bright sparks are:

  1. Portfolio occupancy was still at a healthy figure of above 97%

  2. Rental reversion went up 0.1%

  3. For the period 19 June to 5 July 2020, most tenants have resumed operations and there has been a steady recovery in shopper traffic as the economy transitioned into Phase Two safe reopening

  4. With that, average shopper traffic has recovered to 53% of January 2020 level

  5. Underlying all these is that CMT has financial resilience with a healthy gearing ratio of 34.4%, as of end June 2020.

It looks like it would take some time for things to get back to pre Covid-19 levels. But until then, CMT should be able to ride through the tough times due to its strong balance sheet.

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pat
pat
Level 7. Grand Master
Answered on 20 Jan 2020

Very strong portfolio and a strong mall management skills. they had been increasingly increasinging their footfall by expansion and improving the performance of their mall.

However, i feel that the growth had been priced in at $2.64. Will buy in if it weaken.

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Choon Yuan Chan
Choon Yuan Chan
Level 9. God of Wisdom
Answered on 20 Jan 2020

Similar question and I will touch on the business fundamental of the REIT

Capland Mall REIT is no doubt one of the better REITs in Singapore. However in my view, it has limited growth because its properties is dependent on footfall. With SIngapore population set to stagnate( Unless Singpaore imports in more foreigners), this means Capland malls are set to see limited growth in footfall and in turn revenue. Its mall mix is now mainly heartland mall which means it sells run of the mill items (think uniqlo) and normal restuarant food (Din Tai Fung). All these require volume fo shoppers and does not have any unique value proposition

-

The REIT looks fairly valued to me at current prices

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Bjorn Ng
Bjorn Ng
Level 9. God of Wisdom
Answered on 20 Jan 2020

I just replied a question exactly about CapitaLand Mall Trust, for your quick reference!

One of the better REITs in SG right now. If you noticed, their malls are always super near MRT. Convenient to access and generates a lot of foot traffic. Because of their link to the government, I would think they have "special access" to locations as compared to others like F****rs". Solid DPU & NAV growth and super consistent. In my watchlist!

However, their yield right now is pretty low about 4.42%. I would wait for the time when the yield is 5% before considering to invest, and hold for the super long term!

If you would like to view the post: https://seedly.sg/questions/stocks-discussion-sgx-capitaland-mall-trust-reit-sgx-c38u Isaac & Kenneth went to the AGM and did a pretty good sum up of it!

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Jonathan Chia Guangrong
Jonathan Chia Guangrong, Fund Manager at JCG Fund
Level 8. Wizard
Answered on 22 Dec 2019

I kinda like the management and how the assets are being run. Seem to have some great foresight to do enhancements to the assets at the right time. But price, sector and yield wise, it's no go for me. I prefer the industrial/logistics reit sector.

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Wilson Nid A Break
Wilson Nid A Break
Level 9. God of Wisdom
Answered on 22 Dec 2019

Valuation been bit pricey, and it seems at the last quarter of 2019, price had been hovering near a ceiling. Nontheless, still a well-managed porfolio of quality assets

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Alex Yeo
Alex Yeo
Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 03 Dec 2019

Most of their malls are in really good locations, next to Mrt stations. Singaporeans love to eat, shop and watch movies and hang out so malls are still relevant in Sg. Good track record, strong sponsor, decent dividend yield. Just that at current valuation, 3 Dec 2019, the price to book ratio looks a bit overvalued.

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