St Modwen Properties PLC has reported a “solid” annual performance, with strong progress made in repositioning its portfolio.
The urban regeneration company sold £529 million worth of assets during the 12 months to November 30. In the 18 months since announcing the strategy, it has sold £814 million of assets, some 40 per cent of the portfolio at that time.
Almost half the retail portfolio has been sold for £177 million.
The company accelerated its industrial and logistics development with an increased committed pipeline from one million sq ft to 1.5 million sq ft since the start of 2018.
It has also grown its residential and housebuilding business, delivering 22 per cent growth in St. Modwen Homes volumes to 848 units sold (2017: 694 units). It sold 49 acres of residential land to third-party housebuilders for £53 with at least a similar volume of sales expected for 2019.
Chief Executive Mark Allan said: “2018 has been another positive year for us. With GBP529 million of disposals, we made substantial progress on our objective to focus our portfolio on sectors with the best structural growth prospects and reduce our borrowings, whilst we continued to grow housebuilding volumes and industrial and logistics development activity.
“Despite the ongoing uncertainty in the wider UK economy, structural growth drivers in these two key sectors remain positive, so following the significant repositioning over the past 18 months, we are now well placed to deliver a meaningful improvement in our return on capital and earnings in the coming years.”