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CORRECT: Hammerson sees rent collections improving after virus hit

Fri, 28th Jan 2022 13:19

(Clarifying comparison of rent collections rates for 2021 and 2020.)

(Alliance News) - Hammerson PLC on Thursday said it expects rent collections to improve as footfall continues to recover from Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

The London-based real estate investment trust focused on shopping centres said it has collected 88% of the rent due for 2021 and 97% due for 2020. The amount rent collected for 2021 so far in 2022 is ahead of the pace of rent collection for 2020 at the same point in 2021, a spokesperson for Hammerson noted.

Collections for the first quarter of 2022 stand at 74% of billable rent. As with the last two quarters, the UK remains the strongest performer, with 78% of rent collected, followed by Ireland at 75% and France at 66%.

"We expect collection rates to continue to improve as we go through the quarter," Hammerson said.

The real estate firm said it expects 2021 adjusted earnings will be in the range of GBP75 million and GBP80 million, ahead of the minimum of GBP60 million previously indicated. Hammerson recorded adjusted earnings of GBP36.5 million in 2020.

Gross rental income was ahead of expectations across the group's managed portfolio, while value retail delivered a stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter performance.

In the group's managed portfolio, as government restrictions were reintroduced during the key Christmas trading period, footfall in the UK and Ireland softened marginally, while France remained resilient.

Overall, footfall recovered strongly during the year, particularly when restrictions were eased, with some destinations exceeding 2019 levels and consistently exceeding national indices, Hammerson said.

"This trend has continued in 2022 to date," the company said.

Hammerson shares were down 1.8% to ZAR7.88 in Johannesburg on Friday afternoon. There were down 4.1% to 37.79 pence in London.

By Artwell Dlamini; artwelldlamini@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2022 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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