Hektar Asset Management Sdn Bhd (Hektar REIT), the management for Hektar Real Estate Investment Trust (Hektar REIT), plans to install solar panels across its malls to lower total energy costs, according to Johari Shukri Jamil, the company's chief executive officer.
"It is important to address electricity usage as it takes a huge portion of our utility bill, constituting about 89 per cent where we paid about RM19 billion alone last year on electricity," he said.
Hektar REIT owns two million square feet of retail space in four states, with assets valued at RM1.2 billion as of Dec 31, 2022.
Its portfolio of commercial properties includes Subang Parade in Selangor; Mahkota Parade in Melaka; Wetex Parade and Classic Hotel in Muar, Johor; Central Square in Sungai Petani, Kedah; Kulim Central in Kedah and Segamat Central in Johor.
Its revenue reached RM117.5 million in the financial year 2022 (FY). The company is targeting to achieve up to 86 per cent in its overall portfolio occupancy rates for FY2023, against 82 per cent in FY2022.
Johari Shukri said that there are internal targets and capital spending for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) activities this year, as well as what the company intends to achieve.
Hektar REIT intends to ensure that all business activities adhere to strong ESG standards, he said following the company's shareholders' meeting earlier this month.
Over the last five years, he said, the company has invested RM10 million in various climate-change-related programmes.
It has also invested in research and development, developing the building and facilities, machinery, and automation, such as adding chillers and replacing incandescent bulbs with energy-saving light-emitting diode bulbs.
In addition, the company has explored renewable energy initiatives, reduced energy usage, restored cooling towers, updated air-conditioning and mechanical ventilation, and constructed cold water systems.
Johari said that by replacing traditional bulbs with energy-saving LEDs, its Segamat Central mall saved a total of RM12,000 in 2022.
Hektar REIT has chosen a cautious outlook on REIT sector growth for FY2023, owing to inflationary pressures and an uncertain global outlook that may influence domestic economic activities.
According to Johari Shukri, as the retail industry continues to recover from the Covid-19 outbreak, Hektar REIT is aiming to revitalise Subang Parade by refurbishing the building and its facilities to improve the entire shopping experience for local consumers.
The company is in the midst of a tenancy remixing operation for Subang Parade and Segamat Central, to improve the overall offering.