Liberty Two Degrees Profiting in a Changing Retail Property Environment

  • Liberty Two Degrees Limited (“L2D”), the South African focused, retail REIT, announced its results for the six months ended 30 June 2019.
  • The property portfolio valued at R10.2 billion reported net property income of R337.8 million compared to R272.8 million in the prior corresponding period.

The increase is as the result of net property income growth of 23.81% normalised to 6.1% when taking into account the new assets acquired from the Liberty Property Portfolio (“LPP”) as part of the restructuring transaction concluded in 2018.

The healthy level of core income growth was supported by positive lease escalations primarily in the retail portfolio with the sustainability of rental levels underpinned by strong trading density growth. Costs were well managed across the portfolio and benefitted from the successful resolution of the Eastgate rates valuation appeal.

The board declared an interim dividend of 29.31 cents per share for the six months ended 30 June 2019, in line with the guidance provided to the market.

Commenting on the results, Chief Executive, Amelia Beattie said: “We are proud to report good results that is testimony of the quality of our portfolio as well as the solid fundamentals supporting our asset base. We believe in the future of South Africa and remain true to our strategic direction.

 “The ongoing implementation of our strategic building blocks, to prepare the business for an ever changing retail environment, underpins the strong operational performance of our portfolio despite depressed market conditions. The drive and passion of our team saw the conclusion of the renewal of leases covering 133 970m² during the period compared to 15 022m² in 2018. Trading density growth reported an increase of 2.9% which is reflective of continued consumer spending in our centres with Sandton leading at 6.8%.”

The company recently announced that they will be implementing a ‘No Plastic Shopping Bags’ policy across all its malls by January 2020. Read more  

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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