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Singapore property developer second-gen steps down

The second-gen managing director of Singapore property developer City Developments Limited has announced he will step down next month to take up the role of deputy chairman.

Kwek Leng Joo, 60, has held the post since 1995, but now Grant L Kelley, the first non-family member to head the executive management team, will become the company’s first chief executive.

City Developments Limited (CDL) is one of the largest private developers in Singapore, and saw revenues of $3.4 billion (€2.5 billion) in 2012.

Founded in 1963, Kwek's father Kwek Hong Png acquired a controlling stake in the company via his investment vehicle Hong Leong Group in 1972.

Kwek joined the family business in 1980, first as a member of the board and then becoming deputy managing director in 1987. He made his mark on the company as a champion of sustainable best practice and corporate social responsibility.

Kelley previously served as head of real estate for Asia Pacific at Apollo Global Management, and has more than 20 years experience in corporate strategy, private equity and real estate, both in the region as well as in the UK and US.

Kwek's brother and chairman of CDL Kwek Leng Beng, said the company needed to change and evolve as an organization, and be less Singapore-centric due to limited opportunities domestically.

“These new senior management appointments are in line with CDL’s strategic plans to bring fresh perspectives to a rapidly changing and competitive business landscape,” he said. 

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