Hunza – shaping Pe­nang for the fu­ture

> The com­pany and leader trans­form­ing the vi­sion to re­al­ity

The Sun (Malaysia) - - MEDIA & MARKETING -

Apremium hous­ing de­vel­oper in Pe­nang, Hunza Prop­er­ties Ber­had (HPB) con­tin­ues to con­trib­ute to the peo­ple of Pe­nang. In the man­ag­ing di­rec­tor’s seat is Datuk Khor Siang Gin who hon­ours his fa­ther Datuk Seri Khor Teng Tong as the group founder. Fol­low­ing in his fa­ther’s foot­steps, Khor ju­nior is re­garded as the per­son who helmed the com­pany which played a cru­cial role in form­ing Pe­nang’s modern land­scape.

Khor was re­cently awarded the Dar­jah Se­tia Pangkuan Ne­gri (DSPN), in Au­gust this year, which car­ries the ti­tle Datuk. The ap­pel­la­tion was re­ceived from Pe­nang Yang di-Per­tuan Ne­gri Tun Ab­dul Ab­bas.

Look­ing back, Khor shares that he joined his fa­ther’s com­pany as a ma­jor share­holder in 1997. He was ap­pointed as HPB ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor in 2010 and was soon pro­moted to group man­ag­ing di­rec­tor. EARLY YEARS Prior to join­ing HPB, Khor worked as a mar­ket­ing ex­ec­u­tive at Malaysian Oxy­gen Ber­had (MOX). He took up this post upon grad­u­a­tion from a Sin­ga­porean ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tion af­ter re­ceiv­ing a Bach­e­lor de­gree in Busi­ness Ad­min­is­tra­tion from the Univer­sity of Toledo in Ohio, USA.

Since join­ing HPB, Khor has been lead­ing the com­pany in its jour­ney as a pri­vate busi­ness en­tity. He has man­aged to trans­form the group busi­ness model from a prop­erty devel­op­ment firm to be­come a real es­tate ven­ture cap­i­tal­ist and prop­erty in­vest­ing con­glom­er­ate.

Hav­ing re­alised the im­por­tance of hu­man cap­i­tal and peo­ple re­sources as key as­sets for any suc­cess­ful busi­ness, Khor mo­tioned the com­pany to in­vest in its peo­ple. It has since, con­sis­tently pro­vided av­enues for em­ployee train­ing and im­prove­ment via pro­grammes and cour­ses. More­over, it is also the first pri­vate com­pany in Pe­nang to pro­vide re­tire­ment ben­e­fits to its staff work­ing with them for more than 10 years.

Be­sides his des­ig­na­tion at Hunza, Khor also holds the post of pres­i­dent of Fi­abci Malaysia’s Pe­nang Chap­ter. The po­si­tion be­fits one whom many claim is highly con­cerned about the devel­op­ment of the real es­tate in­dus­try in Pe­nang. Ac­tively lead­ing de­vel­op­ers to meet with gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials, Khor takes his po­si­tion and the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties that come with it most se­ri­ously.

He not only en­sures smooth and open com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween in­dus­try play­ers and of­fi­cials but un­der­stands the need to main­tain good re­la­tions to en­sure in­dus­try mat­ters and is­sues can be broached, tabled and re­solved timely and pro­fes­sion­ally.

EX­CIT­ING FU­TURE Into the fu­ture, Khor states that he is proud of HPB’s many achieve­ments, es­pe­cially set­tling the squat­ter is­sues in Bayan Baru. The com­pany now has its sights set on bring­ing the com­pany into the next chap­ter, as the de­vel­oper that leads Pe­nang to be­come an in­te­grated city – Pe­nang In­ter­na­tional Com­mer­cial City (PICC).

“More than 90% of the squat­ters that were oc­cu­py­ing the land needed for this devel­op­ment have been com­pen­sated mon­e­tar­ily or with a brand new low-cost home in Bayu Nya­man in Bayan Lepas. In terms of com­pen­sa­tion, we have paid up close to RM100 mil­lion to the set­tlers,” shared Khor.

From the mar­ket price an­gle, the set­tlers re­ceived a good deal. Those who re­ceived homes also were also awarded units with main­te­nance for free for a year. “I can say we have done our part to as­sist the com­mu­nity, at the same time help these squat­ters who mainly con­sist of hardcore poor, to own a de­cent home, in a de­cent area,” said Khor.

“At the same time, HPB has also helped the state gov­ern­ment de­velop the once squat­ter area, in turn bring­ing it closer to the state’s vi­sion of trans­form­ing Pe­nang into an in­ter­na­tional smart city.”

Ac­cord­ing to the blue­print, PICC in­te­grated city will en­com­pass 43 acres, con­veyed in a state-of-the-art town­ship of­fer­ing com­mer­cial com­po­nents that in­clude re­tail shop­ping, ho­tels, a hos­pi­tal, of­fices, ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions and more. Di­vided into three phases, con­struc­tion on PICC is sched­uled to be­gin in 2017 with phase 1 ex­pected to be com­pleted af­ter four to five years.

“PICC will be in line with the state gov­ern­ment’s pol­icy of build­ing an in­ter­na­tional and smart city that pro­vides more than 20,000 em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties to the peo­ple of Pe­nang. It will be Pe­nang’s land­mark,” shared the for­mi­da­ble leader, bent on mak­ing the state gov­ern­ment’s vi­sion for Pe­nang a re­al­ity.

Khor shows a model of HPB’s Alila 2 con­do­minium at Hunza Tower.

Fo­cused and for­mi­da­ble Khor.

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