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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

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Ascendas keen on expansion

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First phase of Chennai IT park fully occupied

EXPLORING OPPORTUNITIES: Mr Jonathan Yap (right), CEO, Ascendas India, and Mr Lee Fu Nyap, CEO, Ascendas Chennai, at a press conference in Chennai on Tuesday. - Bijoy Ghosh

Chennai , May 30

Ascendas India, a subsidiary of Ascendas of Singapore that builds and maintains office space, is exploring opportunities in other areas such as biotechnology parks, bio-IT, special economic zones and in providing space for the manufacturing sector.

Till now, Ascendas India has been active in providing space for the ITindustry with facilities in Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai. The first phase of the international technology park along Chennai's IT corridor has been fully occupied and work has commenced on the 730,000 sq ft second phase.

This will be completed in mid-2007, according to company officials. Ascendas has also started planning for the 600,000 sq ft third phase of the project.

According to Mr Jonathan Yap, Chief Executive Officer, Ascendas India, the company is keen on expanding not only in its existing locations but also to other cities in the country. It feels that Ascendas will be able to offer its expertise in the manufacturing sector.

Ready-built factories

Ascendas offers ready-built factories for the manufacturing sector, which can be multi-tenanted ones or can be used as workshops, technical service centres or as stand-alone factories.

According to Mr Yap, Ascendas is open to the idea of tying up with a local partner who will bring in expertise of local market conditions.

Mr Yap and Mr Lee Fu Nyap, Head-Chennai Operations, told a press conference here on Tuesday that work on the first phase of the one million sq ft Ascendas-Mahindra IT Park, a special economic zone, had commenced and the 250,000 sq ft facility would be ready by the first quarter of 2007.

Good response

The contract for the second phase has been awarded to Consolidated Construction Consortium Ltd, a Chennai-based contractor. Tion Seng Contractors Pvt Ltd of Singapore designed and built the first phase, in which the investment was Rs 130 crore.

The response to the second phase of the International Technology Park, Chennai was good and the company was confident of finding tenants. In the first phase, spread over 525,000 sq ft, the company was able to get a lease rental of Rs 40 a sq ft. The company would invest Rs 200 crore in the second phase and Rs 50 crore in the first phase of the Ascendas-Mahindra IT Park.

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