Custodian REIT PLC (LON:CREI) said it intends to pay a maintained divided of 5p this year on the assumption rental collections hold up as planned.

The property trust said it had collected 91% of rents in the year to end-March 2021, though it took a write-down of £29mln on its retail properties that was partially offset by an uplift at its industrial and logistics sites.

Net asset value per share at the end of the year was 97.6p (101.6p) with net assets worth £409.9mln (£426.7mln).

The dividend for the year was 5p (6.65p) making a NAV total return per share of 0.9%.

David Hunter, chairman, said: “Custodian REIT’s investment strategy has been tested, with the company operating for a full year under the shadow of COVID-19. 

“From a low point in May 2020, Custodian REIT’s share price has been gently recovering, matching the greater clarity that the company has provided around dividends through the course of the year.

“The impact of the pandemic has been to accelerate the decline in high street retail, pushing an increasing number of occupiers into insolvency and many occupiers into seeking to defer rental payments.  

“However, 91% of rent was collected, net of contractual deferrals, meaning I was delighted to be able to announce dividends per share totalling 5.0p for the year and that the company is targeting a dividend per share of at least 5.0p for the year ending 31 March 2022, based on rent collection levels remaining in line with expectations.” 

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