Hongkong Land posts record profit on fine showing from Hong Kong, Singapore

Hongkong Land has posted a 20 per cent rise in underlying net profit to a record US$935 million (S$1.18 billion).

Including the net surplus of US$255 million recorded on property valuations, the bottomline swelled to US$1.19 billion.

This is lower than 2012's profit of US$1.44 billion, which included net valuation gains of US$662 million.

Revenue for the year to Dec 31 soared to US$1.86 million, up from US$1.11 billion in 2012.

Underlying earnings per share climbed to 39.73 US cents from 33.11 US cents while net asset value per share firmed to US$11.41 from US$11.11 previously.

The directors have recommended a final dividend of 12 US cents a share, taking the full year payout to 18 US cents. In comparison, the payout for 2012 was 17 US cents.

Hongkong Land said 2013 was a year which saw improved performances from both its commercial and its residential activities.

In Hong Kong, rent reversions remained positive for the office and retail portfolios, while Singapore benefited from a full-year's contribution from Marina Bay Financial Centre (MBFC) and higher average rents.

Contribution from residential developments rose strongly, following the completion of three projects in Singapore.

Subsidiary MCL Land completed two fully-sold projects, Este Villa and The Estuary, comprising 121 freehold townhouses and 608 apartments, respectively.

Profits were also recognised at the one-third owned Marina Bay Suites, which was some 90 per cent pre-sold.

Looking ahead, Hongkong Land chairman Ben Keswick noted that the key commercial markets of Hong Kong and Singapore are expected to remain broadly stable in the year ahead.

"In our residential businesses, a higher contribution is anticipated from the group's mainland China operations, but this will be more than offset by a significant reduction in profits from our Singapore residential operations."