pounds 100m bonus for MEPC's shareholders
Wednesday 03 June 1998
The group will repay pounds 400m by issuing a bonus of redeemable "B" shares, using the rest of the proceeds of the sale to fund a pounds 550bn development programme in the UK. Originally, only pounds 300m had been expected.
The extra capital will reward shareholders who have in the last year put MEPC under intense pressure to sharpen the focus of its corporate strategy.
Since last September, the group has mounted a wholesale restructuring, ditching its US and Australian operations and buying UK property.
In February the group sold its Australian portfolio for A$418 (pounds 157m) - a price lower than hoped because markets were depressed by the impact of the Asian crisis. By the end of April, it had also sold its US portfolio for $1,315m (pounds 807m), considered a reasonable price.
In the same period since September, MEPC has sought to refocus on properties which will bring a higher investment return, buying pounds 685m of UK property and selling holdings worth pounds 650m.
The group said it remained optimistic about prospects for UK property prices. Occupier demand was particularly strong in the south-east office market, the company said.
James Tuckey, chief executive, said: "We have delivered on everything we said we were going to." He said gearing had been reduced to 65 per cent, allowing the company to complete developments in the UK. He expects the company to spend pounds 250m over the next year and a further pounds 300m before the end of the year 2000.
The pounds 2.3bn group has recruited a new chairman, Sir John Egan, to replace Michael Blakenham at the beginning of August. Sir John is currently chairman of BAA, the airports business.
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 3 UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
- 4 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 5 Men behaving badly: Urinating while standing, 'manspreading' and the gendering of selfishness
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Ellen DeGeneres leads Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Paul Bettany in revealing game of Never Have I Ever
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£45000 - £47000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / ...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...