Slough Estates to spend pounds 170m on projects
Friday 28 March 1997
Net assets per share, the key measure for a property company, rose from 267p to 285p during the year, ahead of analysts' expectations. Slough said strong growth in the economy was driving demand for manufacturing sites and warehouses.
Sir Nigel said: "1996 has been a positive year with increases in both earnings and net assets per share. We enter 1997 with confidence."
The strongest growth was in the UK portfolio, which had asset growth of 4.8 per cent, much of it coming in the second half of the year. "That has grown more than the rest because 60 per cent of our UK portfolio is located in the buoyant Thames Valley area," Sir Nigel said.
The overseas portfolio saw strong performance in the US and recovery in Canada. The NAV per share would have grown 4p more had it not been for the strong appreciation of sterling, the company said.
Borrowings fell to pounds 689m from pounds 791.5m previously, which helped to boost the NAV per share. The company said occupancy for the year was 94.5 per cent, unchanged from a year earlier.
Justifying Slough's decision to accelerate its development programme, Sir Nigel said: "Improving business conditions, particularly in the UK, have resulted in better sentiment towards property investment. These conditions are evidenced by stronger occupancy, a resumption of rental growth and increasing property values. Demand from users has absorbed the available stock of good- quality property and conditions are now favouring selective new development."
During 1996 core pre-tax profits rose by pounds 10.3m, 18 per cent, to pounds 67.5m, despite an unfavourable exchange rate effect of pounds 1.7m.
After a resumption of rental growth, the level of over-renting in Slough's UK portfolio - properties paying a higher level of rent than the prevailing market rate and so offering no potential growth - decreased from 7.8 per cent to 3.4 per cent.
- 1 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 2 Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 3 Vogue under fire for 'Big Booty' article
- 4 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
- 5 Kanye West stops concert after two fans don't stand up - doesn't realise one is in wheelchair and the other disabled
Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
Jihadi John': MI5 may have identified Isis militant who killed David Haines but options limited
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: Police will be on high alert on Friday whatever the result
The wedding photo from Ground Zero: A shot in the dark
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
iJobs Money & Business
£20 - 24k (Uncapped Commission - £35k Year 1 OTE): Guru Careers: We are seekin...
£20 - 24k + Benefits: Guru Careers: This is a great opportunity for an enthusi...
£280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...
£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...