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Property firm courts pink $ (Today [Singapore])
14 Nov, 2003

SC Global becomes first developer to target gay buyers openly

IF BANKS start offering pink credit cards — just for gays and lesbians — and the rest don't get it, you read about it here first.

Indeed, the pink dollar has proven such a strong performer that SC Global Developments is the first property developer here to openly woo it for its 30-storey "loft-in-the-sky" condominium, Lincoln Modern.

On Nov 23, some 4,000 members of Singapore's gay and lesbian community will head to Newton for high tea and a "special exclusive viewing" of the "ultra-modern" 56-unit development.

This "invite-only" event will launch a six-month campaign by Fridae, the leading regional gay website, to promote Lincoln Modern to its members in collaboration with SC Global.

Said 31-year-old Dr Stuart Koe, CEO of Fridae: "Many companies are starting to realise the potential of this market. If they act now, like SC Global has, they will still be considered market pioneers as not that many have actively sought the pink dollar."

And worth targeting it is.

Founded just two years ago, Fridae now boasts about 100,000 regional members — 50,000 of whom are Singaporean. Half of all members earn above $45,000 per annum and 43 per cent are professionals, managers or businessmen.

"You get very good returns for every dollar spent marketing to the gay community," Dr Koe said.

According to a spokesperson for SC Global, there will be three more such Lincoln Modern viewings over the next three months, each targeting a different segment of Fridae's online community, of which 30 per cent are female and 70 per cent male.

There are 33 units available, ranging between 1,200 and 1,400 sq ft, costing $1,100 per sq ft on average.

However, SC Global is not bent on marketing Lincoln Modern solely to the gay community.

Said a spokesperson for the property developer: "Lincoln Modern was conceived as quality housing for well-heeled singles and couples and gays form a segment of our target market.

"By reaching out to them, we are trying to fulfil our duty to shareholders to churn sales."

As for the gay community's orientation towards Lincoln Modern, Dr Koe said: "We think there is strong fit between the development and our members. They do like the fine things and not all developers have the same quality in finishing."

Property consultancy Hamptons International subtly marketed The Arris — an upmarket condo in Tanjong Pagar — to gays earlier this year. It was estimated that 20 to 30 per cent of the buyers were gay.

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