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Poly income rises on stronger sales

POLY Real Estate Group Co said yesterday net income jumped more than 50 percent to 2.239 billion yuan (US$327.8 million) last year amid increased sales despite an industrywide downturn.

Revenue for the 12-month period soared 91.24 percent to 15.52 billion yuan, the Guangzhou-based company, China's largest state-owned developer, said in a statement to the Shanghai Stock Exchange.

Poly sold a total of 2.58 million square meters of space across the country last year, a 29.5-percent increase from 2007, it said.

"Poly reported good sales last year as it introduced more projects to the market," Wei Bo, a real estate analyst with Central China Securities Co, told Shanghai Daily yesterday via telephone. "Therefore the developer will definitely encounter greater pressure this year because they have a large inventory."

Poly, the second-largest listed developer in the country's A-share market following Shenzhen-based China Vanke Co, said its inventory was worth 40.19 billion yuan at the end of last year, a 43-percent increase from a year earlier. That accounts for almost 75 percent of the company's total assets.

In 2008, Poly added 12 new projects and expanded its land reserves by 5.94 million square meters. The number of projects, either under construction or in the pipeline, reached 68 as of December 31.

The company also said it started construction on developments with a total gross floor area of 4.56 million square meters and completed work on projects with a total GFA of 2.85 million square meters during the period.

Guangzhou, Beijing and Shanghai are its three major markets. Sales from the three cities accounted for nearly 60 percent of the company's total during the past year.

In a separate statement, Poly also said yesterday it plans to raise up to 8 billion yuan by selling additional yuan-denominated A-shares to particular investors.

Proceeds from the plan, still pending regulatory approval, will be invested into eight projects across the country, said the company. Poly said it would purchase as much as 1.5 billion yuan of the new A shares.

Sales continued to be robust in the first month of this year, Poly said. The company sold 183,800 square meters of homes for 1.376 billion yuan in January, up 269 percent and 148 percent, respectively, from the same period a year earlier.


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