Caixin
Oct 11, 2016 05:00 PM
PROPERTY

Evergrande Becomes China's Largest Property Developer By Sales

(Beijing) — China Evergrande Group has dislodged rival China Vanke Co. as the country's largest property developer by sales this year.

Evergrande sold homes and office buildings worth 280.58 billion yuan ($41.9 billion) from January to September, the company said in a filing to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Monday, surpassing Vanke's 262.9 billion yuan.

Vanke, mired in a bitter ownership tussle since mid-2015, saw its property sales decline by a third in July and August before they rebounded in September, data from the company showed. But Vanke's 25.38 billion yuan of sales in September is still only slightly more than half of Evergrande's that month.

Spurred by a housing boom in China's first- and second-tier cities, Evergrande saw property sales reach 47.52 billion yuan in September, an increase of 324 percent compared with the same period last year. The average selling price rose 16.5 percent to 9,212 yuan per square meter, the company said.

In August, Evergrande pushed up its sales target for 2016 by 50 percent to 300 billion yuan after it hit its original yearly sales goal in July. The revised target was the most ambitious among mainland builders as China's housing market picks up steam.

"The group is fully confident on reaching the adjusted contract sales target for 2016 and will continue to uphold the strategy of 'fast development, fast sales, fast capital recovery,'" Evergrande Chairman Hui Ka Yan said in a statement.

In August, Evergrande spent $2.2 billion to raise its stake in Vanke to 6.82 percent, making it the third-largest shareholder of the homebuilder and allowing it to nominate a board member.

Contact reporter Chen Na (nachen@caixin.com); editor Poornima Weerasekara (poornima@caixin.com)

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