Property developer Hammerson reports 'transformational year'

FTSE 100-listed retail property manager and developer Hammerson has reported growth of 2.1 per cent in group like-for-like net rental income in the year ended December 31st.

FTSE 100-listed retail property manager and developer Hammerson has reported growth of 2.1 per cent in group like-for-like net rental income in the year ended December 31st.

The company said that this demonstrated continued tenant demand for its properties and the success of asset management activities.

Occupancy of 97.7% was achieved, above the group's target of 97% and up since the half year stage.

Hammerson reported that its portfolio had been repositioned to a pure retail focus. It announced office asset disposals for £627m at a 7.0% premium and £541m investments into retail venues.

The group also reported a reduction in net operating expenses of 7.0% and said that finance costs were down 11% year-on-year.

With regard to active liability management, Hammerson reported that a seven-year €500m 2.75% bond had been issued and new £175m revolving credit facility had been agreed in December.

The final dividend increased by 7.5%. A total dividend for the year of 17.7p per share was reported.

David Atkins, Chief Executive Officer of Hammerson, said: "We have again proved that high-quality retail assets combined with active management can deliver good income growth even in a challenging environment.

"2012 was a transformational year for Hammerson, where we successfully executed over £1.0bn of investment activity to become a pure retail-focused company. Looking forward, our visibility of the future earnings profile of the business gives us confidence, and we continue to seek opportunities to enhance the scale and efficiency of our business through further acquisitions," he added.

MF

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