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SPH Reit declares 1QFY19 DPU of 1.34 Singapore cents

RETAIL landlord SPH Reit has declared a distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.34 Singapore cents for the first quarter ended Nov 30 2018, unchanged from a year ago.

The DPU will be paid out on Feb 15.

Net property income dipped 1 per cent year-on-year to S$41.79 million, mainly due to lower revenue from Paragon shopping mall. Property operating expenses were higher by 6.5 per cent on the back of higher marketing expenses. Meanwhile, gross revenue edged up 0.6 per cent to S$53.81 million.

Paragon recorded a positive rental reversion of 10.1 per cent for new and renewed leases for 1Q 2019, which translated to 8.4 per cent of the mall's net lettable area. The overall portfolio saw a positive rental reversion of 9.7 per cent. SPH Reit's properties maintained an occupancy of 99.2 per cent as at 1Q 2019.

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Susan Leng, chief executive officer of SPH Reit Management, said that the full contribution from Figtree Grove Shopping Centre is expected in the second half of the year. SPH Reit completed the acquisition of an 85 per cent stake in Figtree Grove Shopping Centre for around A$175.1 million (S$167.9 million) in December last year. Its joint-venture partner, Moelis Australia, holds the remaining stake.

Ms Leng added: "The property is an established sub-regional shopping centre in Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia and is a strategic fit with SPH Reit's portfolio of quality assets. This acquisition provides SPH Reit with the opportunity to further create value and continue to deliver long-term returns for unitholders."

New loans were taken up in December to finance the acquisition, lifting the Reit's gearing ratio post-acquisition to about 30 per cent from 26.3 per cent as at Nov 30.

Units in SPH Reit closed unchanged at S$1.01 on Friday.