Recent acquisitions boost Soilbuild Reit's Q3 figures

Soilbuild Business Space Reit's portfolio includes the Solaris (above), a business park development at one-north.
Soilbuild Business Space Reit's portfolio includes the Solaris (above), a business park development at one-north.ST FILE PHOTO

Recent acquisitions boosted the numbers at Soilbuild Business Space Reit in the third quarter.

The trust posted a distribution per unit of 1.625 cents for the three months to Sept 30, up 5.1 per cent from the same period last year.

This was on the back of a 20.8 per cent jump in distribution income to $15.1 million and a 22.4 per cent rise in gross revenue to $20.7 million.

The rise was mostly due to acquisitions completed in the last two years, as reflected in the additional rental revenue.

Rent from Technics accounted for $2 million. For KTL Offshore, Speedy-Tech and Solaris, they amounted to $900,000, $500,000 and $100,000, respectively.

  • AT A GLANCE

  • NET PROPERTY INCOME:
    $17.8 million (+25.3%)

  • DISTRIBUTABLE INCOME:
    $15.1 million (+20.8%)

  • DISTRIBUTION PER UNIT:
    1.625 cents (+5.1%)

Net property income climbed 25.3 per cent to $17.8 million, but this was partially offset by higher net finance costs due to additional borrowings to fund the new acquisitions as well as a higher average all-in interest rate.

Soilbuild Reit announced the successful refinancing of its $185 million club loan facility last month. Following this, its weighted average debt expiry has lengthened to 3.5 years and the all-in cost of debt has been reduced to 3.2 per cent a year.

Moreover, its borrowing costs are significantly insulated against interest rate hikes, with 97.9 per cent of the interest rate exposure fixed for the next 2.1 years.

During the quarter, renewals and new leases were signed for over 250,000 sq ft of space, bringing the total for the first nine months to more than 780,000 sq ft. Occupancy rates remained high at 98.7 per cent.

Despite challenging operating conditions in the industrial space, the progress of leasing activities in the third quarter underscored "the attractiveness of our properties", said the manager for Soilbuild Reit, which will focus on the leases expiring in the fourth quarter and next year.

The weakness in the industrial property market is exacerbated by a slowdown in manufacturing as well as the huge pipeline of factory space for the rest of the year.

The Reit continues to face a challenging operating environment as weak macro-economic outlook puts pressure on rentals and occupancy.

Overall leasing activity in the third quarter eased as the number of transactions fell from month to month.

Based on the JTC rental index on multiple-user factory, rents have been declining gradually since the third quarter of last year.

"Barring any unforeseen events and subject to renewing and re-leasing the remaining space that expires this year, the manager expects Soilbuild Reit's portfolio to maintain a stable performance in FY2015."

Soilbuild Reit units closed unchanged at 82 cents yesterday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 15, 2015, with the headline 'Recent acquisitions boost Soilbuild Reit's Q3 figures'. Print Edition | Subscribe