Hatten Group’s bold move sees it soar higher in Malaysia

Since developing a number of successful commercial developments in the historic town of Melaka in southeast Malaysia, the Hatten Group has now set its sights on bigger goals. Colin Tan, Group Managing Director, speaks to World Finance


Melaka is known as the ‘Historical State’ in Malaysia. The town, located to the south east of Kuala Lumpur’s towering skyscrapers, has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008, because of its 16th century colonial fortifications, churches and buildings. Today it is a popular tourist destination, and one that Hatten Group, Malaysia’s fastest growing property developer, took a chance on.

Back in 2004 Hatten Group was still a budding property developer, eager to establish itself in a competitive market. That is why it decided to take on an abandoned development located in the heart of Melaka, a high-potential, yet untapped market. As a flagship venture, many were sceptical about this bold move. But it paid off.

The project, known as Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall (DPMM), is the largest global retail destination in the region, measuring an astounding two million square feet with an average of 11 million visitors every year. As the first developer to recognise the potential in Melaka’s property and commercial-tourism industry, Hatten Group is now widely acclaimed for its pioneering philosophy and innovative quality standards.

DPMM in numbers


Retail lots


Visitors per year


Year opened

With over 750 retail lots, DPMM is the most diverse shopping destination in the region, but it is its mesmerising historic features that truly set the development apart. The group wanted to ensure that it made the most of what is now Melaka’s UNESCO World Heritage Site.

“DPMM is designed to preserve the historic ‘Padang Pahlawan’ while cultural features are tastefully incorporated into the design of the mall,” says Colin Tan, Group Managing Director of the Hatten Group.

Sustainable ventures
Following the success of DPMM, Hatten Group has grown to dominate Melaka’s retail arena with an ever-expanding portfolio of retail projects. Hatten Square Suites and Shoppes, launched in 2011, offer over 200 retail lots, including the first H&M, MST Golf and Braun Buffel flagship megastores in Melaka.

“By the end of 2014, Hatten Group will have completed yet another outstanding development, Terminal Pahlawan,” says Tan. “This mixed retail project incorporates four floors of vibrant retail with an international coach bay, a travel hub and a boutique hotel. Featuring the first indoor ‘Baba Nyonya Heritage Street’ themed shopping experience, Terminal Pahlawan is set to conquer the local commercial tourism industry.”

As the Hatten Group continues its meteoric rise to the top of the Malaysian property development market, Tan insists that all this success is due to the group’s commitment to more than just quality construction and unique designs.

“Hatten Group ensures the viability of its projects with an outstanding leasing team that has brought in some of the most coveted brands to Melaka. With a central management in place to control the operations of all retail developments, Hatten’s high-standards are consistent and efficiency is increased for higher profitability on investments.”

Future projects
Recently, the Hatten Group has chosen to ensure it is offering the best possible services by incorporating a brand management division that will take responsibility for securing the licensing for international brand franchising. To date, the team has successfully secured famous Hong Kong labels SEMK and Pacific Coffee.

“More excitingly, the team is set to launch Hatten Group’s very own ‘Teddie Bear’ brand in Elements Mall,” says Tan. “The first of its kind in Malaysia, the Teddie Bear themed floors in Elements Mall will feature the first Teddie Bear Museum, children’s theme park and a luxury Teddie Bear themed hotel. According to plan, Hatten Group will successfully incorporate eight more international franchises under its brand management sector within the next five years.”

Hatten Group has expertly developed its retail development business over the years, and is now reaping the rewards of such hard work, and will continue to do so into the near future. “By 2025, Hatten Group will have developed over five million square feet of retail space, managing over 5,000 hotel rooms and offer over 5,000 residential units, effecting major commercial-economic control over south-western Malaysia,” says Tan.

The company now has a considerable amount of projects across Malaysia. These include the Capital 21 development at Capital City, which has transformed the Iskandar Johor region with world-themed floors that feature 21 famous cities. There is also the Unicity development that offers shopping, dining and ‘edutainment’ next to a bustling university campus.

With these goals firmly in sight, the group will secure its base in the booming state of Melaka, Malaysia, as the sole largest retail and property developer, as well as hotelier, in the city. Hatten Group will be the catalyst, the main entry point for international brands, businesses and corporations looking to capitalise on Melaka’s highly profitable economy. And from this distinctive base, it grows and develops as a leading Malaysian property behemoth.