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Asia’s property pioneers: Building brands

For large integrated property developments that aim to attract communities to “live, work, play” super blocks, edge cities or lifestyle shopping and entertainment developments, careful branding and marketing are as important as capital, bricks and cement. So successful have some developers become that brands created from single projects have become exportable into other developments and even overseas.

Asia’s property pioneers

  Monetizing dreams “Project branding is very important now,” says M Ridwan Kamil, principal at architect and urban design firm Urbane Indonesia. “It’s not just lifestyle or media super blocks being developed now, but you have financial, commercial and pure residential blocks too.”

The Lippo Karawaci edge city in Jakarta was so popular that the name was adopted for Lippo’s entire property group. Shui On, which developed the Xin Tian Di retail concept in Shanghai, has used this same brand to begin new developments in Chongqing, Wuhan and Hangzhou. In Beijing, the name was even copied for a vast shopping mall unrelated to Shui On.

SM Investments has developed a unique brand and image, Hamilo Coast, for its huge eco-tourism project in southern Luzon. Several luxury villa developments in Bali, by Dharmala Intiland, a major Indonesian property developer, have proved so popular that the firm has decided to export the brand, Kayumanis, as a private villa and spa concept and is currently developing villas for expatriates and wealthy Chinese in Nanjing, Kunming and Guilin.

“We want an Indonesian brand that goes out into the international market,” says Utama Gondokusumo, commissioner (supervisory board member) at Dharmala subsidiary Taman Harapan Indah.

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