Chou Ching has been in active practice for 19 years in corporate real estate and real estate finance work, with a special focus on divestment and acquisition of development sites, commercial and investment properties, and industrial buildings. Her portfolio also includes project development work.
She regularly advises banks and financial institutions on property-related financing and regulatory issues and plays an instrumental role in the commencement of her clients’ mortgage lending business in Singapore, including drafting of loan agreements and memoranda of mortgage.
Chou Ching has recently been recognised as the Lawyer of the Year for Real estate at the Women in Business Law Awards Asia 2020, which recognises law firms in the region for the achievements of their leading women in the legal profession based on their initiatives and within their respective jurisdictions. She has also been recognised in the 2022 Edition of Best Lawyers in Singapore.
Chou Ching represents property developers, investment funds, statutory boards, small and medium enterprises and high net worth individuals in a wide range of real estate matters.
In particular, she frequently advises clients on the structuring of real estate deals and financing aspects and is often approached by clients to assist in niche and novel areas like joint developments and partitions, development projects which do not fall within the purview of the Housing Developers (Control and Licensing) Act, and acquisition and divestment of shophouses which often involve land use, policy and regulatory considerations apart from the legal aspects of the transaction.
Chou Ching’s experience includes acting for:
Acquisitions, Divestments and other Projects
- Acted for industrial gas company Linde in advising on the land-related aspects of the $1.4 billion expansion of its gasification complex on Jurong Island as part of a gas supply deal with ExxonMobil.
- Acted for a private equity fund management company in advising on the real estate aspects of the business transfer of one of its special purpose vehicles pursuant to an internal restructuring exercise. The core of the vehicle’s business is the operation and management of a 9-storey commercial development on the fringe of Orchard Road with a floor area of an estimated 180,000 square feet. The property includes retail spaces, office floors and a car park. The business transfer was valued at an estimate of $300 million.
- Acted in the sale of Mediacorp's former iconic Caldecott Broadcast Centre, located at the heart of the Caldecott Hill Good Class Bungalow Area, for an estimated $280 million. The sale was carried out by way of the sale of the entire issued and paid-up capital of the company holding the site, and was the largest private redevelopment site sold in 2020.
- Acted in the sale of a freehold residential development site located at 217-223A Guillemard Road and 1-21A Jalan Molek for S$93 million.
- Acted for 8M Real Estate Private Limited and its related companies in its acquisitions of various shophouses, hotels and serviced residences at Amoy Street, Keong Saik Road, Gemmill Lane, Ann Siang Road and Tanjong Pagar Road.
- Acted for United Overseas Insurance Limited in its first real estate investment, the acquisition of 146 Robinson Road Singapore from United Overseas Bank Limited at S$52 million as an interested person transaction.
- Acted for Fragrance Group in the sale of its five-storey freehold namesake building at 168 Changi Road for S$28.8 million.
- Acted for T G Development Pte Ltd and Tee Development Pte Ltd in the exchange of an aggregate of 80 units in two separate developments jointly developed by the two companies with the units estimated to be valued at S$165 million. The matter involved making multiple representations to Land Dealings (Approval) Unit on issues pertaining to qualifying certificate and for obtaining consents to the change of ownership, as well as to Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore on stamp duty considerations. Also acted for Tee Development Pte Ltd in a related financing of about S$27.6 million.
- Acted for Kim Hock Enterprise Pte Ltd in its acquisition of 72 Loyang Way from a Singapore REIT which comprise of several land parcels, for an aggregate price of $33.08 million.
- Acted for Oxley Sanctuary Pte Ltd in the purchase of McDonald's Place at King Albert Park worth S$150 million and subsequent sale of units in the project developed on the site.
- Acted for Indonesian-related company in the completion of the sale of a strata-titled commercial building for S$27 million to the government of Kuwait. The sale contract was signed after more than six months of negotiations and in the midst of falling market prices, with a two-week completion period. There were unique issues, such as approvals from the Foreign Ministries of the respective countries, encroachments, and approvals from the Land Transport Authority, which made for a challenging transaction.
Collective Acquisitions and Sales
- Acted for a wholly-owned subsidiary of CapitaLand’s CRL Realty Pte Ltd in the collective acquisition of all the strata lots and common property in the 288-unit development known as Pearl Bank for a total consideration of S$728 million, including the topping up of the existing leasehold interest to a fresh 99-year leasehold interest.
- Acted for Lum Chang Auriga Pte. Ltd., a subsidiary of Lum Chang Holdings Limited, in the collective acquisition of all the strata lots and common property in the development at 12 One Tree Hill Singapore, and an adjoining strip of land, for a total consideration of S$67 million, and in the financing aspects of the deal. Also acted in the sale of the developed houses.
- Acted for Hullet Development Pte. Ltd. in the collective tender acquisition of all the strata lots and common property in the development at 8 Hullet Road Singapore, for a total consideration of S$38.2 million from 2 companies incorporated in Jersey and Liberia, and in the financing aspects of the deal. Also acted in the sale of the developed units.
- Acted for Tong Eng Brothers Pte Ltd and its related company in the collective acquisition of the 26-unit Cai Garden, a residential development at Foo Kim Lin Road for S$43 million. The collective sale was made by private treaty with the agreement of all owners.
- Acted for the owners of Farrer Court in the sale of the 618-unit development to Morganite Pte Ltd, a consortium comprising CapitaLand, Hotel Properties and Wachovia Development Corporation, for S$1.3388 billion.
- Acted for the owners of Westwood Apartments in the collective sale of the development to YTL group for S$435 million.
- Acted for the owners of Amberville in the first-ever collective sale of old HUDC flats.
- Led the real estate team in advising the borrower on the real estate aspects of its financing in relation to the acquisition by Allianz Real Estate Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, on behalf of National Pension Service of Korea and Allianz group companies, via its AREAP Core I fund, of a 50% stake in OUE Bayfront. The transaction deal is about S$634 million.
- Led the real estate team in acting for a syndicate of lenders in the real estate aspects in financing the collective acquisition of the development known as Park West consisting of 436 residential and commercial units and the construction costs of the new development, totaling about S$1.13 billion.
- Led the real estate team in acting for a syndicate of lenders in the real estate aspects in financing the collective acquisition of the development known as Landmark Tower consisting of 139 residential units and the construction costs of the new development, totaling more than S$384 million.
- Led the real estate team in acting for a syndicate of lenders in the real estate aspects in financing the acquisition of the Government Land Sales site at Stirling Road and the construction costs, totaling S$900 million.
- Led the real estate team in advising the lender on the real estate aspects of an Islamic loan financing, amounting to approximately S$190 million, for refinancing existing loans and for asset enhancement works at Starhub Green, a 7-storey building located at 67 Ubi Avenue 1, Singapore.
- The transaction deal is approximately S$190 million. Led the real estate team in advising the lenders on the real estate aspects of a green loan financing in relation to facilities for, inter alia, the construction and development of a data centre. The transaction deal is approximately S$150 million.
- Led the real estate team in acting for the lender in the real estate aspects of financing the collective acquisition of the development known as Jervois Garden Singapore and the construction costs of the new development, totaling $80.4 million.
- Led the real estate team in acting for the lender in the real estate aspects in financing the acquisition of a hotel at Telok Blangah Road, totaling approximately S$168 million.
- Led the real estate team in acting for the lender in the real estate aspects in the development financing for the project at 19 Nassim Hill, totaling $110 million.
- Acted for a bank in the acquisition from another bank of a portfolio of property and term loans granted to medical practitioners and medical and dental clinics in Singapore, which was transferred pursuant to Section 55C of the Banking Act and required the approval by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the High Court.
- Acted for several banks in reviewing and drafting their template documents and security documents for the commencement of mortgage lending in Singapore.
- Acted for Razer in its build-to-suit lease from Boustead Project's joint venture company of its new South-east Asia Headquarters at One-North.
- Advising a statutory board in the grant of separate leases for a private and a public golf course, involving discussions among multiple agencies.
- Member, Singapore Academy of Law
- Member, Law Society of Singapore