In 2002, MUIS proposed for a development of residential apartment consisting of 84 units, a mosque and commercial areas. This was the first time that MUIS was faced with a development of such scale and an attempt to develop wakaf properties/assets using external financing. An innovative financing model consisting of two parts, ‘Musharakah’ (partnership) and ‘Ijarah’ (leasing contract), was subsequently structured for this purpose.
Under the Musharakah agreement, Wakaf, Baitulmal and Warees partnered to redevelop the Wakaf. The Wakaf contributed the land whilst Baitulmal provided the necessary funding needed to develop it through the issuance of ‘sukuk’ (Islamic bonds). Warees, on the other hand, provided their developer’s management expertise towards the development. Returns are then distributed as per the capital invested.
The second part of the model being the Ijarah was entered between the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) with Ascott International Pte Ltd, who agreed to manage the property for a period of 10 years.
In 2017, Bencoolen Street was injected with a new lease of life following the completion of Downtown Line 3 works for Bencoolen Station. It featured wider footpaths, dedicated cycling paths and additional bike parking facilities to make walking and cycling more convenient. Given that the Wakaf development has been around approximate 13 years, Muis felt it was timely to rejuvenate the property given the change in its surrounding areas. Warees, through its newly-formed subsidiary, WBD Legacy Pte Ltd (WBD Legacy), entered into a Joint Development Agreement (JDA) with Muis in 2018 to revitalise the whole development under Wakaf Revitalisation Scheme (WRS) II as well as to manage the operator.
WBD Legacy was also given the rights to enter into a Management Agreement with Ascott International Management (AIM) for the ensuing 10 years for the management of the property. The revitalisation involved intensifying the prayer spaces for the mosques, the erection of a new 4-storey commercial podium and enhancing the serviced apartment units.