The vacancy rate of China’s New South China Mall, also known as the world’s largest shopping mall, has reached 99% since its opening in 2005

World’s largest mall is ghostly quiet

Staff Reporter

2013-03-11

The vacancy rate of China’s New South China Mall, also known as the world’s largest shopping mall, has reached 99% since its opening in 2005, reports caijing.com, a Chinese-language website specializing in financial news.

The shopping mall — which was built off of a total of 4.5 billion yuan (US$723.7 billion) in investments — is located in Dongguan of China’s southern Guangdong province. The 450,000 square meter mammoth can accommodate 2,350 stores and 8,000 parking lots. However, the near 99% vacancy rate has earned it the less fortunate name of “ghost mall” by the Chinese people.

South China Mall, predecessor of New South China Mall, opened on May 1, 2005. The mall was ranked as the world’s largest shopping mall by store rental rate. Chinese PKU Resource Group redeveloped and renamed the mall as the New South China Mall in 2007.

There has been a trickle of customers coming in over the years to stop by the US fast food chains near the entrance and the IMAX cinema outside the mall.

Ye Jining, chief of the investment department of New South China Mall, said he hopes the rental rate can be lifted to 80% from the current 20%. The mall will hold a series of promotional campaigns to meet the goal from March, said Ye.

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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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