First Reit Q3 DPU rises slightly to S$0.0066  

THE manager of First Real Estate Investment Trust (Reit) reported on Tuesday (Nov 8) a distribution per unit (DPU) of S$0.0066 for the third quarter ended September, up slightly from the S$0.0065 in the year-ago period. 

The quarterly DPU of S$0.0066, has been unchanged since the fourth quarter of 2021, and total DPU for the first 9 months of 2022 stood at S$0.0198, up 1.5 per cent from the corresponding period a year earlier.

Rental and other income rose 39.2 per cent on year to S$80.9 million for the first nine months of 2022; net property and other income was 40.1 per cent higher, at S$79.1 million, the manager said in a business update on the Singapore Exchange.

The distributable amount for the first three quarters of 2022 was also up 23.7 per cent on year, rising to S$38.8 million from S$31.4 million.

The manager noted that the increases were largely due to the contribution from the acquisition of 12 properties in Japan in March 2022, followed by the acquisition of two more properties there in September 2022, and recognition of accounting standards for rental straight lining adjustments for Indonesia hospital properties and Singapore properties. 

The manager of First Reit aims to increase its portfolio in developed markets to more than half of its assets under management (AUM)  by 2027. Currently, more than a quarter of the Reit's AUM are in developed markets. 

The Reit had 32 assets across Asia as at Sep 30, 2022, with a total AUM of S$1.2 billion. Its properties had 100 per cent committed occupancy, with a weighted average lease expiry of 12.7 years.

First Reit had total debt of S$445.4 million and a gearing ratio of 35.6 per cent as at Sep 30, 2022. Its proportion of debt on fixed rates stood at 61.7 per cent.

In terms of outlook, the manager said the economic environment remained challenging, amid factors such as tighter financial conditions, ongoing geopolitical tensions, and the lingering impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Despite a challenging economic environment, First Reit will continue to harness its '2.0 Growth Strategy', ride on sustainability and demographics megatrends, actively manage currency risk and interest rate risk, and prioritise the sustainability of distributions to its unit holders," the manager said.

First Reit units closed at S$0.245 on Tuesday, down 2 per cent, before the business update.

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