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Frasers Hospitality Trust DPS falls 68.3% for FY20

FRASERS Hospitality Trust (FHT) has posted a distribution per stapled security (DPS) of 1.3982 Singapore cents for the full year ended Sept 30, down 68.3 per cent from 4.4129 Singapore cents the previous year.

DPS stood at 1.0695 Singapore cents for H2 FY20, down 50.8 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y). The distribution payment date will be on Dec 29.

For the full year, gross revenue was down 40.9 per cent y-o-y at S$88.6 million, while net property income dropped 46.4 per cent y-o-y to S$59.8 million.

Similarly, distribution income for FY20 fell 64.4 per cent from the previous year to S$29.9 million. FHT said in a press statement on Friday that to "conserve cash", it had retained S$3 million of its distribution income for "working capital purposes".

Colin Low, chief executive of FHT's managers, said that FY20 has been "the most challenging year in FHT's history to date", with its financial performance "severely affected by exceptional lockdown measures and border closures arising from the worldwide spread of the pandemic".

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He added that the risk of resurgence of Covid-19 will continue to weigh on FHT's portfolio performance in the near term.

Across its portfolios, FHT's Malaysia portfolio, comprising The Westin Kuala Lumpur (TWKL), saw the greatest decline in gross operating profit (GOP) for the full year, falling 92.1 per cent y-o-y to RM1.9 million (S$624,000). In the second half of FY20, its GOP also turned negative.

"In view of the weak trading environment which saw most hotels in Kuala Lumpur recording lower occupancies and room rates in recent months, TWKL has remained temporarily closed since May 2020 to conserve cash," said FHT.

GOP for the trust's UK and Japan portfolios were also among top decliners for the full year, falling 69 per cent and 63.7 per cent respectively.

As at Sept 30, FHT's total borrowings stood at S$886.4 million, with gearing at 37.7 per cent and the weighted average debt to maturity at 3.62 years.

"FHT's asset management team continues to review recovery plans for all properties with their respective operators to drive new revenue opportunities and further cost rationalisation," said the trust on Friday.

FHT is a stapled group comprising Frasers Hospitality Real Estate Investment Trust and Frasers Hospitality Business Trust.

Stapled securities of FHT closed at S$0.40 on Friday prior to the results announcement, up S$0.015 or 3.9 per cent.

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