The property arm of Tatung Co (大同) is to auction off real-estate properties in the Greater Taipei area in March, bid organizers Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) said yesterday, as affiliated subsidiaries are seeking to restructure their finances.
The Taipei-based conglomerate is embroiled in boardroom disputes, while the subsidiaries — flat-panel maker Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (CPT, 中華映管) and solar-wafer unit Green Energy Technology Inc (綠能科技) — have filed for financial reorganization and debt negotiations.
The property divestments might give the group some breathing room, as it has reported losses of NT$128.1 billion (US$4.16 billion) over the past 10 years and has shown no signs of improvement, local media reports have said.
The conglomerate’s business interests encompass home appliances, consumer electronics, solar wafers, retail sales and others, with eight subsidiaries listed on local bourses.
Shan Chih Asset Development Co (尚志資產開發), which is in charge of the group’s real-estate-related business, was its main profit contributor in 2017, with the group owning more than NT$100 billion in land and buildings in different parts of Taiwan including Tatung University in Taipei’s Zhongshan District.
The assets unit has sold properties or used them as collateral to help keep troubled affiliates afloat, and the latest auctions are to sell a building near MRT Nanjing-Fuxing Station in Zhongshan and two plots of land in New Taipei City’s Tucheng District (土城).
The auction announcement came two days after a CPT check of NT$1 billion bounced.
JLL investment manager Sherry Wu (吳瑤華) said that given the convenient locations of the buildings, the auctions could bring in more than NT$10 billion combined.
The building in Taipei sits on a 456 ping (1,507.4m2) plot of land that could qualify for urban renewal and bring favorable development terms, Wu said, adding that it could generate rare annual returns of 3 percent in rent based on an asking price of NT$5 billion.
Buyers could turn the two plots in Tucheng into residential complexes that would be within walking distance of MRT Haishan Station, she said.
The broker has received more than 20 inquiries from potential buyers, mostly local property developers, it said.
The consultancy said it is to make bidding details public on Monday.
Several Tatung shareholders yesterday protested outside JLL Taiwan — on the 20th floor of the Taipei 101 building — saying there were legal concerns over the auction.
They refused to recognize the legality of Tatung’s board members and urged JLL to stay away from the management dispute.
Wang Kuang-hsiang (王光祥), chairman of Shanyuan Group (三圓建設), which owns an 11 percent stake in Tatung, last month said he is to vie for management rights of the company.
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