Suntec Reit's Q1 payout comes in flat at 2.229 cents each

SUNTEC Real Estate Investment Trust (Suntec Reit) has reported a 1.2 per cent uptick in its distribution income to $50.9 million for the first quarter ended March 31.

Suntec Reit's distribution per unit (DPU) came in at 2.229 cents, just above the 2.228 cents announced in the same period a year ago.

Distributable income rose as the first phase of renovation and upgrading works at Suntec City mall was completed.

The re-opening of Suntec City after its first phase of upgrading works led to higher net property income and gross revenue over the period.

Net property income jumped 42.7 per cent to $43.8 million, while gross revenue rose 32.8 per cent to $66 million.

The reit's manager, ARA Trust Management, said in a statement on Thursday that Phase 1 of Suntec City mall's committed occupancy reached 100 per cent.

Another retail asset, Park Mall also maintained its 100 per cent committed occupancy, enabling the reit's overall committed occupancy for the retail portfolio to stand at 98.7 per cent.

Its office portfolio performed even better, achieving an overall committed occupancy of 99.4 per cent.

ARA Trust also said contribution from its acquisition in North Sydney also helped to boost income.

Mr Yeo See Kiat, chief executive of the reit's manager, said it is preparing to open another part of Suntec City mall following the second phase of upgrading works.

It started the third phase of upgrading works at the mall in February and construction is expected to complete by 2014.

"Our current priorities are to focus on the execution and completion of the remaking of Suntec City as well as proactive lease management to strengthen the lease commitments and maintain the high occupancy level of our office and retail portfolios," Mr Yeo said in a statement.

Suntec Reit's shares closed up 3 cents at $1.74. It reported its earnings after the market close.